The holidays are here, which means lots of people are on vacation, traveling and spending time with family and friends. Chances are you will also be taking part in some holiday traditions, those annual rituals that add to the magic of the season.
Even if you already have some traditions, you may be looking for more ideas to make your holiday celebrations even more memorable. Here are some great ideas for holiday traditions that you can enjoy at any age.
Festive Movie Nights
Nothing says the holidays like festive movies, especially when they are accompanied by delicious drinks and snacks! A great tradition is to get the family together around the television and watch some seasonal classics that everyone can enjoy. And no movie night is complete without special treats and beverages.
During this time of year, hot drinks are especially popular, and there are some fantastic choices. There is of course the classic hot chocolate, which you can customize in countless ways. For a movie night, you might want to set up a hot chocolate bar, complete with a selection of mixes, whipped cream, marshmallows and other toppings of your choice. Or you might want to try other seasonal drinks like hot mulled wine or apple cider, or making your own eggnog flavored coffee.
No matter what you choose, the combination of enjoyable movies and favorite treats with your loved ones is a wonderful tradition.
Game Night Around the Fireplace
If you are lucky enough to have access to a fireplace, make sure you take the time to enjoy it! When you are sitting with friends or relatives around the fire, it is a perfect time to share stories and break out the board games.
Old-fashioned classics like Monopoly and Clue are always fun, and so are more recent board games like Settlers of Catan depending on what you prefer. Card games are also a great option, whether you prefer traditional games like poker and blackjack or the Cards Against Humanity variety.
Cookie Baking and Swapping
Christmas cookies and other baked treats are a seasonal favorite, and baking with a group of people can make the experience even more fun.
One option is for everyone to bring a favorite cookie recipe and the necessary ingredients to one person’s house and to bake together. With this setup, it is easy to include some favorite music and treats for a cookie baking party.
Another idea is to attend a cookie swap, where each person brings one type of cookie. Cookies are exchanged until everyone has a platter of many different kinds of cookies to bring home with them.
Helping Those in Need
The holidays are a good time to give back to the community, and there are so many ways you can do this.
One way is to buy Christmas gifts for a needy child, which you can do whether you know their family or if you participate in a Giving Tree or toy drive. You can also donate a Christmas dinner, or donate food items to a local food bank or homeless shelter.
Another option is to give the gift of your time and volunteer at food bank or soup kitchen, which you can do on your own or with some friends or family members. You may also find that there are people in need within your own neighborhood or family. Some of the people may have their physical needs met but may be isolated or lonely, and a visit or phone call can make a big difference for them.
Enjoy Christmas Light Displays
It’s the time of year when houses and town centers are lit up for Christmas, and enjoying these light displays with your loved ones is a wonderful tradition.
If you live in a city or are visiting for the holidays, you have plenty of opportunities to enjoy the lights and decorations. But even if you live in a small town, you may have a downtown area or you can simply go for a drive around the town to enjoy the light displays.
If you are lucky enough to pay a visit to a botanic garden, such as Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, prepare to be amazed and enchanted by the stunning light displays.
Christmas light displays are best enjoyed with others, so they are a great activity to do with a group of friends or relatives.
Holiday traditions are a wonderful way to make the most of the season, whether they involve watching festive movies, preparing special food and drinks, or enjoying the lights. Traditions help us to make memories, to enjoy time with loved ones, and to give back to our families and communities.
What special traditions do you have during the holiday season? Leave a comment on our blog or Facebook page and let us know!