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It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
Every family is uniquely different in their own way. Do you need some new ways to celebrate the holidays this year? Check out my favorite Christmas tradition (#1) and this Christmas traditions roundup from multiple mommas. These traditions are sure to give you the inspiration that you need for some great family Christmas traditions.
Christmas Tradition #1 – In a Pickle
My favorite Christmas tradition is one that my family did when my sister and I were little, and I plan to introduce my son to the tradition as soon as he’s old enough. The tradition is finding a hidden pickle ornament on the tree. The ornament is hidden after the children go to bed on Christmas Eve. On Christmas morning, the first child to find the Pickle ornament gets an extra gift. In our family this was candy when we were little and a Starbucks gift card when we got older. For a single child, the pickle ornament has to be found before presents can be opened.
We started doing this tradition because our family is German and
supposedly it’s a German tradition known as Weihnachtsgurke. However,
few people in Germany have actually heard of this. No one is exactly
sure where this tradition came from. The most likely story is that
Woolworth’s stores started selling glass ornaments imported from Germany
in the 1880s. These ornaments were shaped like various fruit and
vegetables, and pickles were likely among the selection. A salesman
found himself with a lot of pickle ornaments to sell and thus invented
the tradition. There are two other stories associated with this
tradition, but they are probably a little too far-fetched to be
1.) A soldier fighting in the American Civil War was born in Bavaria. He became a prisoner of war and begged the guard for one last pickle before he died. The guard gave him one and the pickle gave him the strength to live on.
2.) Two Spanish boys were traveling home for the holidays and stopped at an inn. The innkeeper killed the boys and put them in a pickle barrel. When St. Nicholas stopped at the inn, he found the boys and brought them back to life.
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Regardless of its origin, the pickle ornament has become a major part of Christmas tradition in America. Pickle ornaments are widely available in a variety of sizes. This can be helpful so that for little kids you can use a larger ornament and you can use smaller ornaments as the kids get older. Pickle ornaments can still be purchased in the original glass material; however, they are also available in metal and plastic varieties for households with young kids and pets. Some cities have even become part of the tradition! Berrien Springs, Michigan is known as the Christmas Pickle Capital of the World. The city even has a pickle festival during the first part of December.
As for My Family
My son won’t quite be a year old yet as of Christmas, so he may still be a little young to take part this year. However, by next year, he will learn to be a pickle-finding expert. However, there will still be a pickle to find, as my mother hides a pickle for my sister, me and our significant others to search for. The winner still gets a gift card and it’s just as competitive as it was when we were kids.
An Untraditional T
Who am I?
Raina from Kuntuckiana Momma
Not every family tradition is, well, traditional. Such is the case in my family.
First, let me tell you a little about my Grandmother who started this tradition. She was born in the 1920’s, so she was raised during the Great Depression. She has always been a practical person. Not to say that she won’t get you something for the fun of it because she does have an amazing sense of humor. This tradition is steeped in basic necessity. It is the most basic of necessities that she wants to make sure that both the men and the women in family have met at least once per year. The men get socks. However, for the ladies, we have the Panty Tree. Yes, a Panty Tree! I mean everyone needs underwear right?!?!
Once a girl in the family hits the age of 8-10, she is allowed to participate in everyone’s favorite holiday tradition. Well, at least it’s the favorite in my family. We have run the gamut from literal granny panties to thongs and everything in between. We try to keep things more in the brief, bikini, and hipster family of Women’s underwear since those will actually get worn.
Cassie’s Christmas Tradition
Who I am
I am the mom at White Sands and Cool Breezes.
I remember growing up that our biggest Christmas tradition was going to midnight mass. We’d either stay up until it was time to go, just watching TV, and/or listening to music, or we’d go ahead and go to bed then get up, get ready then go to mass. We’d go straight to bed after we’re got home from church. In the morning we’d see what was in our stockings first. Then someone, this became me as we got older and is still, would pass out all the presents. We’d spend the rest of the morning opening presents and playing with them. Mid-afternoon we’d have our big Christmas dinner: turkey, mashed potatoes with gravy, cranberry sauce, stuffing, green bean casserole, rolls of some sort and for dessert pumpkin pie. We would then take a much deserved and wonderful nap. The rest of the day was spent playing with our presents, watching TV and just spending time as a family. As we got older we started adding in going to see a movie at some point too!
Christmas Tradition – Salt Dough Ornaments
Who am I?
Sonja, from TOO MUCH CHARACTER
When I was a child, I would make some kind of craft to give away to my loved ones for Christmas. Some years I created ornaments, baked goods, or made a Christmas decoration for each family member. It meant a lot to be able to give something that I made.
As a result, I have started my own kiddos young with the tradition. My first attempts at doing salt dough ornaments with them were quite messy and comical. If you are interested in reading how to make these cute ornaments, check out my blog post. It’s a very honest and real post about the process it takes to make these with young kids here in the U.S. up north in cold Minnesota.
Check out the full post here!
Christmas Tradition- Buy Less, Love More
Who am I?
I am a stay at home mommy & founder of Slice of Ky.
I know being a SAHM, you do a lot. Yes, you do earn your rights to hubby’s money, but I can’t be the only one that feels bad about that….right? I grew up in a household that didn’t have much money to blow. I am a proud survivor of dollar tree (gasp!) and “you’re only getting 5 things” (double gasp!) Christmas’s.
Luckily, it’s a little easier to dip into hubby’s pocket when it’s
gifts for your kids. This is actually Evelyn’s first Christmas! She will
be 10 months old AND I AM SO EXCITED. I know everybody’s present
situation will be slightly different. Some families have the extra money
to spend, while some families will not be able to provide much – but
that’s okay! I’ve briefly talked to my husband about what we’ll be
getting her. I say briefly because it’s basically me just rambling to
him while he gives me a few “uh-hums” and “sures.” I am hoping we are
able to set a foundation for later holiday seasons in life.
Basic kiddo present guideline:
- Something they need
- Something to wear
- Something to read
- Something they want
The Holidays don’t need to be full blown in order to make cherished memories. We are intending on focusing on the time spent with family, not the overabundance of gifts. Netflix, hot cocoa, and pictures sounds fairly surreal to me! I am so incredibly excited to start this Christmas tradition. I hope one day my sweet little Evelyn can do the same for her children!
Check out the full post at Holiday shopping guide for the SAHM.
Christmas Traditions Focusing on Family
Who am I?
When I found I was pregnant, I was excited
Picking a Tree & D
We will have a specified day where we will go pick a tree, then come home and decorate the tree and the house. I always did this as a kid and it was one of my favorite days! While decorating, we’d play Christmas music and have hot chocolate on the stove. This can also be a great tradition even if you already have a fake tree. Just pick a day to decorate it and your house!
On Christmas Eve, my mom would always pick out a present for us to open – it was usually pajamas. Then we’d watch the original Grinch cartoon movie. I plan on doing this same thing – except I want to start making a Grinch hot chocolate – green hot chocolate with heart sprinkles! Then my kids can open a gift of my choosing (probably pj’s) and then we can watch the Grinch together before going to bed.
Looking at Christmas Lights
I definitely want to drive around looking at Christmas lights. It’s always so peaceful to me to just drive slowly and take in the pretty lights and snow (if you live in a snowy area). I’d love to bring a thermos of hot cocoa and play Christmas music while we drive around. Plus, I live in the Chicagoland area and that means we’re near the Home Alone house! My plan is to drive around that neighborhood and look at the lights over there since it’s a very nice area.
It’s these little things that not only make me nostalgic for when I was a
Do you want to take great pictures of your kids enjoying these traditions? Make sure to check out this article for photo-taking tips.
What Christmas traditions do you plan to do with your kids? Let me know in the comments!
Mom, wife, veterinary pharmacist, equestrian, ice cream lover and occasional hot mess