Eight Ideas for Creating Your Own Holiday Traditions
Writer / Alli Donovan
The holidays are one of the most joyful and fun times of the year. Snow is falling, lights are hung and the spirit is merry. What makes it so enjoyable are the annual traditions that are associated with the holidays.
Whether those traditions are long-established and have been around since you were a kid, or you’re developing new traditions for the holidays, having these rituals during the holidays will create lasting memories. Traditions provide something to look forward to and bring people together.
If you are looking to introduce some new traditions to your family’s holiday festivities, we have done some research and compiled a list of eight holiday activities for you to try!
- A Video From Santa Claus
This is the perfect thing to get your child excited for the Christmas season. The website below allows you to develop a personalized video from Santa Claus and his elves. Santa addresses your child by name, shows them on the nice list and gives them an unforgettable Christmas memory.
- Kindness Elves
Kindness Elves are a great alternative to Elf on the Shelf. Kindness Elves are Christmas toys that encourage children to be kind to others. They promote small acts of kindness instead of causing trouble in the house.
There are many ideas that revolve around Kindness Elves, such as having a note to encourage children to donate their toys, writing a note to a teacher, or creating thank-you notes for after the holidays. Many parents love the Kindness Elves because they can be used all year long.
Make it a yearly tradition to clean out closets and toy chests with your kids. Parents can bring kids along to a donation center and teach them the importance of giving items to the centers that serve their local communities. The kids will be helping those in their community and cleaning out items that are no longer in use – a win-win.
A few locations around Carmel accepting donations include:
- Open Doors of Westfield
- Thrifty Threads in Indianapolis
- Indy Book Project in Zionsville
- Free the Girls in Noblesville
- Want, Wear, Need, Read
The Want, Wear, Need, Read strategy is a popular tradition and gift-giving idea used by parents. This is a simplified gift list that allows children to be in the decision-making process and receive the presents they really want.
- Want: The “want” gift is the big item – the gift they are really hoping to receive for the holidays.
- Wear: Address your kids’ unique style with the “wear” item. Get them an article of clothing that they will wear and appreciate all year long.
- Need: The “need” gift targets a new milestone in life or may relate to their learning. It can be something as simple as a new backpack or something for their room.
- Read: Everyone should read, and why not buy your kid something to encourage fun reading? This gift will speak to their interests and help to develop a love for reading.
- Christmas-Themed Books
Get your kids excited for reading every night. Wrap Christmas-themed books, and each night one child gets to unwrap a book for you to read as a family. This can be a great tradition to start, and you can even aim for 12 books for the 12 nights of Christmas. Utilize your local library, use books you already own or buy some new stories.
- Adopt a Family
Christmas is the perfect time to teach children and teens the spirit of giving. Consider making it a Christmas tradition to work with local charities to find a family in need. Your family can go out and buy gifts together, and spend time wrapping and delivering the gifts – an awesome way to teach the fun of giving.
- A Night-Before-Christmas Box
Imagine opening a box with all of your family’s favorite holiday goodies on Christmas Eve. Include a favorite Christmas movie, a fun game, some hot cocoa mix and popcorn. Oh, and don’t forget the matching pajama sets and fuzzy Christmas socks.
Whether you have kids under the age of 5, teenagers or adult children, this Christmas tradition is always a fun bonding experience for the whole family.
8. Holiday Bucket List
The final idea to add to your list of holiday traditions is to create a holiday bucket list with your family for the month of December.
On December 1 the whole family can gather and each person can pick one thing they would like to do as a family within the month. It could be anything from baking cookies to building a snowman to going ice skating at Carmel’s Christkindlmarkt.
Once the ideas are selected, pick out dates and schedule the activities so you are sure everything on the list gets checked off.
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That’s it – eight new ideas for you to try this holiday season and every year after. We hope you and your family enjoy these activities and make some long-lasting memories. Happy holidays!