If you are like us, you have treasured memories of the holiday traditions you grew up with. Those traditions are what make the holidays special. Of course, even the most treasured tradition can sometimes use an update, so here is a list of our favorites for inspiration.
Build Your Child’s Ornament Collection
Buy your children special ornaments each year. Encourage them to commemorate something such as an event or activity that is important to them. When your child is older, he or she will have a starter set of ornaments for their own tree.
Share Your Creativity
The sixth day of Kwanzaa showcases the creativity (Kuumba) of the Black community. Find ways to help your children demonstrate and share their creative gifts with others. Have them write poems or stories to send to relatives, take video of their amazing dance moves or help them craft traditional gifts.
Host a Cookie Baking Contest
Decorating holiday cookies is a tradition for most families but why not make it more memorable with a “Great Cookie Baking Show.” Give everyone in the family recipes and ingredients and let them go to town. Take video. Once the cookies are baked, declare a winner and eat all of the goodies while watching the show.
Eat Fried Foods
During Hanukkah, you have permission to eat all of the fried foods you want as a reminder of the oil in the Temple menorah burning for eight days instead of just one. Traditionally that means potato latkes and your favorite jelly doughnuts
Make a Gingerbread Village
Instead of one house, recreate your neighborhood! Buy pre-made gingerbread houses in different sizes and decorate them to look like the houses in your neighborhood or craft a village for Santa and his elves.
Wear Matching PJs
No matter what holiday you are celebrating this month — Christmas, Hanukkah or Kwanzaa — make the most of the holiday by wearing matching pjs for at least one morning. It’s fun, you get great pictures and younger children love it.
Create a Holiday Playlist
Use Spotify or Apple Music to put together a playlist of your favorite holiday tunes. Have everyone in the family contribute. You can even include family members who live far away using Spotify’s collaborative playlist feature. For even more fun, make 12 playlists and use them to countdown the 12 days of Christmas.
Camp Out Under the Christmas Tree
Gather up the sleeping bags, break out the hot chocolate and the holiday tales for a Christmas tree campout. Pick any day in December (not Christmas Eve) for your campout. Have each member of the family say one nice thing about other members of the family or put together a list of places the family should volunteer at or donate to.
Track Santa’s Progress
For more than 60 years, NORAD has tracked Santa’s flight on Christmas Eve. Visit the NORAD website to learn how and visit Santa’s village.
Make the Same Holiday Breakfast
Instead of preparing a big holiday morning breakfast, plan something simple, easy and fun. Cinnamon rolls, coffee cake and egg casseroles are all simple to prepare and won’t leave a big mess to clean up before preparing a festive dinner. Check out these ideas from Redbook.