This year, the anticipation and excitement surrounding the holidays are magnified in our household. We will be celebrating with extended family in person and hosting at our house.
We are more appreciative and thankful for this time together than any other year, especially since we celebrated over Zoom last year, which caused us to deeply miss seeing our family and experiencing holiday traditions. I’m sure this is true for many families this year.
Since we are hosting, I want to make the holidays extra special for everyone. Also, while we will all be together, it is for a relatively short time, so I want to make the most of it.
Here are my ideas to honor family traditions and incorporate fun games, activities, and food to bring us all together and maximize our quality time.
1. Plan a Christmas Performance by the Kids
Musical performances and a skit prepared by kids, including a performance program handed out in advance. It’s fun for the kids to come up with their performance list and use their creative energy. And, it keeps them busy so the adults can enjoy some time together. Of course, a video is a great keepsake to have.
2. Make Ornaments for the Tree as Keepsakes
A great craft idea, or you can buy a craft set or make your own.
4. Get Outside
We like to go on a family hike! We plan a short one for the kids and a longer one for the adults that want to keep moving.
5. Family Pictures
We are all so thankful when we get a good picture of everyone together. Let’s celebrate togetherness this year!
6. Family Charity Donation
Choose one or two and donate toys, coats, clothing. It’s great to get the kids involved with giving and make it an annual tradition.
7. Thankful Jar
We start this at Thanksgiving and keep adding to it until Christmas Eve when we read them all and give thanks. This is especially important given the challenges of the past two years. We are all especially thankful to be together!
8. Baking Christmas Cookies
Cousin tradition to get out the Christmas and winter cookie cutter, sprinkles, frosting, and make festive cookies to enjoy after the big holiday meal.
9. Reading of The Night Before Christmas by Clement Moore and Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening by Robert Frost
This is a tradition started by the grandparents, and we love to keep it going. The kids usually take turns reading The Night Before Christmas, and an adult volunteers to read Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening. Taking a video is a must to watch and enjoy over the years.
10. Holiday Movies
Movie time is always fun and a great way to settle down, make a fire and relax together while we eat dessert and enjoy some punch.