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Christmas Family Traditions

Growing up my extended family did not live near us. Often times holidays were spent with just my immediate family of my mom and dad, me, and my sister. My family developed strong Christmas family traditions because it was just the four of us.

Christmas family traditions

Christmas Eve wasn’t Christmas Eve, it was my dad’s birthday. For as long as I can remember we’d get him a puzzle for his birthday each year. We’d spend the day (and the week after Christmas) putting it together as a family. For dinner my mom made a spread of appetizers and we’d snack while playing games. One of our favorite games was Uno. “Blue to you” became a family joke and a “disease” my sister often got as she never had blue cards. Instead of birthday cake we’d eat Ice Box Pudding, a traditional birthday desert handed down my dad’s family for five generations.

Ice Box Pudding

Christmas Day my sister and I would wake early and open our stockings. We’d then go wake our parents and eat Christmas Morning Sticky Buns for breakfast. After breakfast, we would read the story of Jesus’ birth from the bible, pray, then open presents. The rest of the day was spent playing with our gifts, watching movies, taking naps, and hanging out as a family. We’d eat our large Christmas meal around 1-2 pm and snack on left-overs for dinner.

Christmas morning sticky buns

This routine was exactly the same every year for as long as I can remember. Even dating my husband didn’t change things as I was determined to celebrate my Christmas family traditions with or without him. Things changed when we got married and I was obligated to spend time with his family. I wasn’t used to having to split time between different families and not celebrating Christmas on actual Christmas day was a difficult concept for me to grasp.

It’s been 16 years since Hubby and I go married and I was forced to (slightly) change my Christmas family traditions but I try to keep as much of it as I can. I make Ice Box Pudding for my family for Christmas Eve even if we’re not celebrating my dad’s birthday with him and I make Christmas Morning Sticky Buns for breakfast even if we are going to someone else’s house on Christmas day. When we celebrate at our house, we read the bible and pray before opening presents and my girls fight over who gets to read. I hope my girls keeps some of these traditions alive when they have families of their own.

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