Monday, December 16, 2013

Christmas Traditions

Growing up we had certain traditions that we did every year during the Christmas season that I always looked forward to, and now having a child of my own, I have wanted to carry over some traditions with her and make some new ones! Since this is Paisley's first Christmas and she is still pretty little, some of the things will have to wait, but here are something that we have done and some traditions we still have yet to do.

1. Take Paisley to see Santa....We have seen Santa twice this year and both times, Paisley was not a big fan, but I am convinced that the more she cries and the look of horror on her face makes for a better picture. One day I hope she isnt afraid of the jolly ole fella!

2. Christmas Cards... Since Aaron and I got married, I have always wanted to do Christmas Cards but because I somehow always run out of time and forget about it, this is the first year we have done cards! This has been a priority for us this year and I am so excited for everyone to get them in the mail! The hubby made our Christmas cards using photoshop and I am so pleased with how they turned out! And taking pictures were a blast! And with all the photos we have of Paisley from this past year, how could we not do cards??

3. Winter Wonderland at the Zoo... The Tampa Zoo does a really awesome deal where they have part of the zoo open and then most of the zoo is completely covered in lights! They have thousands of lights and its super gorgeous! We went a few years ago, and this year, tomorrow, we are taking Paisley! She loves lights and I cant wait to see the excitement on her little face!

4. Read Christmas Stories...I wait all year for the cute Christmas books, and while we have a few, Paisley has loved reading them. We have the Biscuit touch and feel Christmas book, and Paisley gets excited each time we open it! I will be adding more to her collection when they go on sale after Christmas ;)

5. Watch Christmas Movies...I am a sucker for Christmas movies. Thanksgiving night we normally watch the old Miracle on 34th Street and then go out shopping. We have watched tons of Christmas movies with Paisley so far and its been fun! She gets excited when we turn on the tv and watch with her.

6. Make Christmas Cookies...When we were growing up, we would make the most amazing sugar cookie recipe and decorate cookies for teachers, friends and neighbors. We made cookies the other night and they were so good! I love holiday baking like none other! 

7. Sing Christmas Songs...Christmas songs really are some of the best songs! The hubs and I have had several opportunities to sing a few of them for Church and then on occasion the hubs will pull out the guitar and he will sing or we both will. Paisley claps along :)

8. Look at Christmas Lights...I wait all year for this!! One night is never enough so we generally drive around several times during the season with hot cocoa or Starbucks beverage. This year brings so much joy because Paisley squeals and gets beyond excited about all the lights, especially the ones that play music. Best part of the season!

9. Make a Gingerbread House...The hubby and I started this tradition when we were dating and have done it every year since. We put on a Christmas movie, have popcorn and decorate away! We have yet to get to this one this year, but I am thinking this weekend will be a great time! 

10. Nativity Scene...Paisley got her own Little People Nativity set for a Christmas present that she gets to open tonight and I hope she is excited as I am. I have been wanting my own set for years, since we had one growing up and I am thinking that I will be buying one after they go on sale next week! One tradition I am looking at starting to going to check out the live Nativity set that they do in our area. 

11. Make an Ornament...We use to make fabric ornaments with my mom when we were little and this is one tradition that I want to carry on with Paisley. My favorites this season have been the cinnamon ornaments. 

12. Reading the Birth of Jesus...The first thing we did when we woke up was read the birth of Jesus. Those who could read would take turns reading. We would then pray and we could do presents. My parents wanted us to understand what Christmas was really about, and this is something that we will carry on with Paisley. Its important for us and for her to understand the true meaning of what Christmas is all about. 

13. Attend Candlelight Service...This is something that I have never missed in my life. This year is no exception. Paisley will go and it will be something we do every year! 

14. Christmas Eve Party/White Elephant...Every year since I can remember, my dads side of the family would attend a Christmas Eve service and then we would all meet over at my Uncle Ernies house and eat, and do a white elephant. Our family has grown up and grown in size and its chaotic but its so fun! With my husbands family, we are planning on carrying out this tradition in our new house and I am so excited to be hosting this little part of "me."

15. Sleep Out by the Tree...I get so giddy over this one, because a lit tree, Christmas movies, and sleepover in the living room makes for one special night! Try it!

16. Christmas Breakfast...Growing up we usually had Biscuits and Gravy or Breakfast Burritos. Last year, the hubs and I made French Toast all from scratch. We made the bread from scratch, the fruit syrup from scratch and had one delicious breakfast. This year with Paisley we will either make French Toast again or will try our hand at Cinnamon Rolls. I know the hubs use to have Sticky Rolls for breakfast every year.

17. Christmas Dinner...All of our family would do their separate Christmas deal in the morning and then for Christmas dinner which was usually at 2 we would eat at my grandmas house all together and then do presents as one huge family. This is something we still do every year, and this year will be more exciting with Paisley as she will have tons of gifts to open and play with :)

18. Christmas Evening...I am not sure how well this one will play out this year, but in years past, because we lived in a small town and everything was closed except the movie theater, we would go to whatever was playing and watch a movie. Most of the time it was all the cousins and since Paisley is a little young for a movie we may have to wait, but I love this tradition.

19. Go Ice-Skating...In CO we would just pick a frozen over pond and go ice skate. Here in FL we have to find a rink, but its still a fun tradition to carry on!

20. Elf on the Shelf or Flora...My mom made an Angel that sat at the top of our tree and when we would leave we would come back to a house that was a mess. My parents always blamed it on Flora. That she would get down from the tree and have a little fun. With Paisley, because she is too young to understand I am waiting till next year to do this. I am thinking Elf on the Shelf, but I think it will be one fun tradition that we will begin with Paisley and all our future children :)

What are some of your favorite Christmas traditions?


  1. We have zoo lights in our area! We haven't done it yet but hope to maybe next year when Gabriel will be more interested in the lights and less bugged by the weather. :) This is very sweet.

    XO/Lena @ Root&Blossom

    1. He will have so much fun! Paisley was beside herself excited about everything! Worth the trip, cold weather and money spent to see her excitement :)


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