Holiday Traditions are Meant to Shared

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When I was a child we were very poor in everything except family.  I have a ton of family. When I tell people we were poor they never really get how poor so I will just say that it was bad.  My mom used to try to set aside a little bit each week to buy a gift all year long so that my three sisters and I could have a Christmas.  Obviously we never got much but she tried her very best.  Despite the fact that we never had much, I always loved the holidays.  They are still my favorite time of the year except now its because I get to gorge myself on sweets and family dinners.  I am joking.  Mostly.  I really love this time of year because I love my traditions.  They haven’t changed much in 28 years and I hope they do not ever have to.  I have always went to my Nanny’s house on Christmas Eve to help her cook. We lost her last year before Thanksgiving so I guess I wont be able to pass that on down to my daughter.  There are a ton more though to give to my children.


One of my favorite holiday traditions is decorating. My family always had a great tree and we would gather together to put everything on it. Christmas lights are like magic.  Now that my kids are old enough we let them decide on all the decorations.  My favorite thing that we did not have back then are the LED Christmas Lights.  The lights we had as a kid were constantly having to be replaced and my father would slowly go through each light before finding the one that needed to be taken out.  LED lights save energy and last much longer and can be bought online so that you can get exactly what colors and lengths you want.  Watching my dad curse out Christmas lights was pretty funny though.  I doubt my husband could handle it. My kids always like to look online for great outdoor light designs so that we can fail miserably at recreating them.

We also always go to my Memaws house to make candy.  We make peanut butter fudge, divinity, and potato candy every year.  We also draw names so that everyone can be sure to get something during these bad economic times.  I have like 30 cousins so we pretty much have to.  My friend Merissa has a great tradtion that I love at her house.  It is a Christmas family gift exchange.  It reminds me that every family should have something special that is just for them. Something that even when you are grown up, you want to remember and have always.

I am glad I am able to share some of these traditions with my children. Do you have any holiday traditions? Do you decorate as a family?

About Kat

Kat is a married mom of three kids aged 13, 4, and 2 that lives close to Birmingham, AL. She loves cats, books, cooking, hockey (especially the Chicago Blackhawks & Pittsburgh Penguins), and watching movies. She is an admitted nerd, comic book lover, action figure & barbie doll collector, blackjack dealer, beginner croupier, and all around queen of the dorks. You can reach her at to talk about product reviews, press trips, sponsorships, or brand messaging.


  1. We decorate the tree as a family, and have Chinese food on Christmas Eve :)

  2. Our son is at an age where I feel like we can start to create some family traditions. The only one we really have so far is going to see Santa; his first picture with Santa was when he was two weeks old. :) This year, I’m planning to make our stockings, and it’s something we could easily involve him in.

  3. We are very minimalistic when it comes to the holidays. My kids are thrilled with 1-2 gifts each. It doesnt need to be a huge pile for each kid. That is just excessive. Thanks for the post!

  4. No big traditions yet besides the kids being able to open one present on Christmas Eve, which is pjs so they wake up in non-faded, non-holey pjs for Christmas morning.

  5. I agree especially when some are really special. Decorating our home with lights outside and going to church Christmas morning are definitely two top faves

  6. We didn’t have much growing up either but we were rich in family traditions! Those count so much more then gifts anyway!

  7. I love the holidays – it’s not about the gift-giving but the love & family time shared among one another!

  8. I am so sorry that you lost your Nanny, but I hope that you will be able to cherish her memory ,and enjoy new family traditions this holiday season.

  9. Spending time with the family is my favorite part of the holidays as well! We traditionally put up our tree the day after Thanksgiving and we have several movies that we ust watch throughout the season. I love findign new ways for us to enjoy the holidays together!

  10. My favorite holiday tradition is decorating the tree too–love reminiscing about each ornament :) Thanks for the lovely post about your holiday traditions!

  11. I am a holiday fanatic. I love getting together with family and spending time with them. It makes the season so special.

  12. We decorate – a lot. We have several trees – aluminum ones from the ’50s that we put in various places all over the house.

    What is potato candy? Do you have a recipe?

  13. I haven’t had a Christmas tree in my home for almost 15 years now. since my children moved away and there is just me and my husband, we don’t do it. It is so much work and neither one of us wants to do it. I used to love to decorate the wole house when there were children in it, though

  14. My daughter is getting to the age where she pays attention to the holidays. I hope that, like you, she understands the reason for the season is not about gifts, but about family.

    I’ve never heard of potato candy. That sounds interesting.

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