A Few of Our Holiday Traditions

I grew up in a very “traditional” family, in a small conservative Dutch community located on the shores of Lake Michigan. Tradition ran as deep as the Great Lakes themselves, and and regardless of what holiday were were celebrating, I always pretty much knew what to expect. Looking back, I specifically have fond memories of Christmas and the traditions that followed.

So as soon as I became a parent, I knew that I wanted my kids to enjoy some of the same holiday traditions I grew up enjoying, and of create a few new traditions of our very own.

9 Holiday Traditions My Family Celebrates:

  • Snow Crab dinner with cousins

    Snow Crab dinner with cousins

    This tradition is decades old, spanning many generations. Every Christmas Eve, the extended family gets together for a Snow Crab feast.

  • New holiday pajamas

    New holiday pajamas

    On Christmas Eve, right before we lay out milk and cookies for Santa, the kids get to open one carefully selected gift. It’s always a pair of festive pj’s, so photos look great while opening stockings on Christmas morning.

  • A night of lights

    A night of lights

    One night during the holiday season we load up the family into the car and drive around our city looking at Christmas lights.

  • Personalized ornaments

    Personalized ornaments

    Every year, each of my children receives a personalized (and dated with the year) handmade ornament.

  • The ugly sweater shop

    I’ve been selling ugly sweaters on Etsy for about 4 years now. Whether I like it or not, ugly sweaters definitely have their place in my family’s holiday celebrations.

    My Junky Brilliance ugly sweater shop

  • Christmas Eve candlelight service

    Christmas Eve candlelight service

    Another tradition that has spanned generations is on Christmas Eve, anyone who is still awake towards the midnight hour bundles up and heads to the midnight church service for hymns and hot cocoa.

  • Shopping for a local family in need

    Shopping for a local family in need

    Each year we pass on our many blessing and adopt a family in our community that needs a little extra holiday cheer.

  • Visiting a live nativity

    Visiting a live nativity

    Our hometown has a fantastic live nativity scene where children can pet animals and even interact with Mary, Joseph, and baby Jesus!

  • Make your own pizza and a holiday movie night

    Make your own pizza and a holiday movie night

    Every Friday in December is “make your own pizza + holiday movie” night at our house. We break out our favorites such as Home Alone, Elf and of course Miracle on 34th Street.

I would absolutely love to hear some of your favorite holiday traditions! How does your family celebrate the season?


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