Thursday, December 07, 2006

Christmas Traditions

Here's a little glimpse into our Christmas traditions - some old, and some new.

At my family's house, we always have curried meat pies on Christmas Eve that my Grandma makes. Several years ago, my dad started the tradition of watching The Hunt for Red October on Christmas Eve too. So random, I know. We also play games, mostly Mexican Train, with dominoes. And yes, we have our own rules to this game which are very sacred.

As kids, my brother and I would always leave milk and cookies and a letter to Santa by the fireplace. Santa always wrote back, which, incidentally, is how I discovered his true identity (my dad's handwriting is rather recognizable). Santa always left our stockings full of little goodies and a few presents (unwrapped, of course) for us. He even filled up mom and dad's stockings! We opened all of Santa's presents first thing in the morning. Then we had wrapped presents under the tree that we'd open after breakfast. We'd always have sausage balls and sausage rolls from my Grandma and usually fruit and a breakfast casserole. The cousins, including Kevin and I, are usually elected to pass out gifts to everyone and then it's a free-for-all! Paper flying, cameras snapping and lots of thank-yous.

At some point during the season we watched all the old clay-mation Christmas movies and also White Christmas, which is my favorite Christmas movie. Thanks to my mom, Christmas music was played from the day after Thanksgiving until Christmas day and included tunes from, but not limited to: The Chipmuncks, The Oak Ridge Boys, Neil Diamond, Roger Whittaker, Bing Crosby, etc. We also decorate the family tree the day after Thanksgiving and every year I love unwrapping the special ornaments my mom collected over the years from traveling, special events and homemade ornaments. Each one is like an old friend and I definitely have my favorites: my baby's first Christmas ornament (a carriage with a baby in it), the Coca-Cola Santas, the wooden house that opens up, my ballerina clay ornament, and I could go on.

Since being married, I've adopted Casey's family traditions like breakfast at the Price house, including Granddaddy's waffles. They have just about every kind of breakfast item you can dream up: bacon, sausage, eggs, fruit, etc. Then, all the kids get to open their presents and it's chaos again. Over at the Cooke's house in the evening, there's a Christmas dinner with all the proper fixings and plenty of desserts! We try to hold the kids off until after dinner and then they get to open their presents. Toys, toys everywhere! Then there's the adult gift-exchange game, where there's swapping and stealing of gifts until its all settled. At some point during the day we end up at Casey's parents house to open presents with them. Although I don't have the years of memories or the history of Christmas with Casey's family, their traditions are dear to me now and something I look forward to.


Unknown said...

I love Christmas, and I love traditions.
It's fun to read what other families do. Everyone has such different ways of celebrating.

Anonymous said...

White Christmas is my favorite Christmas movie as well!! My sister and I used to be able to perform our own sister act...

Just FYI, Starbucks is currently selling a packaged set with the soundtrack CD and the DVD.

Anonymous said...

So far, TJ & I have only created one Christmas tradition that we really love: watching Love Actually. One of our favorite movies ever, and it's best to watch it during the holidays.

I guess we'll have to adapt our tradition somehow if kids ever make their way into our family... The uncomfortable Jack/Judy nude stand-in scenes are not exactly family friendly!

Good movie, though. Good movie.