Looking for fun Christmas traditions to start it 2019?
I’ve been thinking lately about fun family traditions to start in 2019. I think its because I knew this year Christmas will be different, with out children getting older.
In an exciting way! (ok also scary) Its easy for me to jump ahead of my self here, and start thinking about December. It’s sort of like… the start of my “new life” is coming and the first thing that will happen in my “new life” will be Christmas.
Plus I just love Christmas and look forward to it for months anyway. I’m not allowing myself any sort of great expectations for this Christmas… I’d imagine in reality, it will be a very quiet Christmas, with us at home alot, and try to catch up with each others lives.
But any how, Christmas traditions have been on my mind. What sort of new traditions will we develop as a growing family? And what traditions can we steal from our own childhoods? And which current tradition will we carry on with this year?
This site contains affiliate links. I can make money if you make a purchase after clicking on one of my links.
Why bother starting family Christmas traditions?
My family has awesome Christmas traditions – very few had to be put away. And with the coming of pintrest into my life, there are a few that I absolutely plan on starting with my kiddos. That will make special memories that will last them a life time.
One thing comes to my mind, that I want to point out. Its not the day to day at home growing up, that I most remember.
Its the special things we did as a family, the things that were different from the day to day, that stand out in my mind.
I want my kids to have great family memories, and Christmas traditions are one of the most fun ways I can think of to create those memories.
Memory making Christmas traditions ideas (to start this year).
1 Decorate the house on Dec. 1
I love having the whole month of December to enjoy the decorations. And growing up, I loved that there was never a question of when we would decorate. We always got the tree up and all the lights on as soon as December hit. To this day, on December 1 I blast the carols, drink the wine, and deck the halls!
2 Make a Christmas playlist.
Speaking of blasting the carols, everyone in the family should have a say in which songs make the Christmas play list. And let it be the sound track for your December. You can add to it each year.
3 Make homemade Christmas cards.
They can be easy or elaborate! Anything from a simple family photo stuck on card stock to adorable hand print reindeer… Its more about the time you’ll spend together then the finished product. You can find plenty of fun items at the Dollar Tree. I use photo prints from mixbook.com for my pictures. But if you would rather have them costume made for you they also have a great Mixbook’s Holiday Card Collection.
4 Ditch gifts altogether and take a family vacation.
You could even save money by forgoing the trimmings and jumping on a plane to Disneyland, or maybe spending a quiet week on a beach in Hawaii. Memories you’ll make will last far, far, longer then the legos you buy, and you’ll actually enjoy the break too. (you could still get the little people something fun to open from the Dollar Tree.
5 Make a family holiday bucket list at the beginning of the month.
On Dec. 1, sit everyone down and let each person pick one thing they’d like to do (as a family) in December.
6 Fill a shoe box with treasures for less fortunate kids.
Take the whole family shopping for shoe box supplies and teach your kids that Christmas is not ALL about getting.
The next 7 on this list are maybe my top favorite picks for fun Christmas traditions for kids.
7 Decorate a ginger bread house.
This is never as much fun when you have to do all the baking of the ginger bread house pieces…but after they came out with the pre baked houses, we did one every year. Try to find kits on clearance right after Christmas and save them in your freezer. You can also make smaller houses out of graham crackers.
8 Bake and decorate Christmas cookies.
There are so many fun ideas for decorating cookies, and it can be just as much fun (and maybe easier) then decorating a ginger bread house.
9 Write letters to Santa.
Write letters to Santa with your kids, and send them off. You don’t have to tell your kids, but you really should photo copy these letters, and keep them in a album. Bring them out to look at when your kids have kids!
10 Have a family slumber party.
Everyone’s allowed to stay up late and build forts in the living room. Read Christmas stories and drink hot chocolate. Talk about all the things that happened throughout the year- write them in a special journal that you can add to every year.
11 Have a Christmas movie night.
For as long as I can remember, we’ve had a family movie night (sometime during the week that is Christmas) and we always watched National Lampoons Christmas Vacation. With popcorn and hot chocolate. We still do to this day. On what ever day my family gets together to celebrate.
12 Or have a every night is Christmas movie night.
Choose a week (or two) worth of Christmas movies and each night cross one off of the list.
13 Family game night.
Just like movie night. Our hands down favorite game is pie in the face.
These next few are the best Christmas traditions for adults.
14 Fondu night.
Maybe this just seems like Christmas to me because we did it for the first time at Christmas. And then it became another important thing on our Christmas tradition list.
15 Garage sale gift exchange.
Hear me out on this one – its another one of our favorite Christmas traditions. It’s better done in large groups. We know it’s coming all year long, and the longer you have to plan for it the better – because you can find the best gifts that way. We play it like a standard gift exchange – where everyone playing brings one gift, it’s assigned a # and then the # gets drawn out of a hat, if its your number, you choose the gift with that #.
16 After the kids go to bed – have “just you guys” Christmas traditions.
So I’m already planning how to adapt to this one! Your traditions can be super simple, but it’s important to focus on each other once in a while.
17 Attend Christmas eve candle light service.
Its so easy to forget that Christmas is actually about the fact that Christ came here for us. This is something I will do with our kids every year. Take time out this busy Christmas season, and thank Him.
18 Go for a Christmas lights drive.
For the last couple of years, we’ve gone driving to look at Christmas lights late at night. Its awesome! Take popcorn and hot chocolate in travel mugs. It’s basically free entertainment for the kids.
19 Christmas eve gift box.
My parents always chose one little gift we were allowed to open on Christmas eve. I always looked forward to that so much. I love the idea of a gift, that’s just one gift for the whole family. It could be anything from a Christmas movie to matching Christmas pajamas.
20 Christmas morning music.
No one ever made us eat a healthy breakfast on Christmas morning, it was straight to the gifts, with hot chocolate and music!
These next 5 are amazing traditions to start with toddlers or babies.
21 Read the Christmas story.
It’s never a waste of time to stop and remind ourselves of the true meaning of Christmas and to cement it into our children’s minds.
22 Christmas tree ornament.
Pick out one new tree ornament to add to your growing collection of special ornaments. Or better yet, make a tree ornament every year. You could make salt dough hand prints and paint them, cut a ring off of the bottom of your tree and date it, or dip pine cones in glitter.
23 Hang up Christmas stockings.
Get everyone in your family their own stocking. Dollar Tree even has them! They can hang empty all month as decorations, and be magically filled over night on Christmas eve.
24 Hang your mistletoe
How did this get to be a tradition? 50 years ago when my parents got together, my mother hung up a plastic sprig in the entry way, and that’s where it was placed every year after.
25 Christmas morning family photo.
Every one in their jammies, with their hair all crazy, surrounded by wrapping paper. We set the camera on timer. These are some of my favorite photos to look back on. Print them out for display next year. Mixbook’s Home Decor has a ton of options to choose from!
26 Special “Santa” wrapping paper.
We keep one special roll of paper hidden. And every Christmas morning there was one more gift there than there was had been the night before, wrapped in special paper.
27 Want, need, wear, and read gifts.
This isn’t something that we did growing up. Its a great tradition to start with toddlers. I really was to keep Christmas from getting too materialistic. I love the idea of gifting everyone with something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.
28 Christmas crackers at dinner-you must wear the hat!
29 Hide the Christmas pickle.
You don’t have to use a pickle-it can be anything.
30 Volunteer for the less fortunate.
Getting your kids out doing something nice for some one who has less is a great way to instill gratitude in them for what they have.
Creating Christmas traditions for your family is a very practical way to parent on purpose.
I think making a point of creating family Christmas traditions is one of the most on purpose things we can do for our families-these are things that will stand out in our kids minds when they look back on their time at home.
Making the time to enjoy the holidays together, and create memories together is something you’ll never regret.