Musings About Holiday Traditions…

Happy Musings Thursday my friends!  I’m back with another musings post.  I’ve got some thoughts, so let’s get to ’em…

It’s Thursday.  It’s less than a week until Christmas. I’ve got today and tomorrow left of work, and then I’m done for the year. What’s there not to be excited about?

Oh, yea.  This Christmas Event.

So let’s stay on the excitement topic…and let’s not talk about Christmas in TSTO.  Seriously, this is going to be a very NON-TSTO post.  So if you’re only here for TSTO information, and don’t think anyone should have a thought outside of TSTO, this isn’t the post for you.

There’s your disclaimer, so if you complain that this isn’t a TSTO post in the comments…you have no one to blame but yourself. I want to stay on the topic of excitement.  I don’t want to talk about TSTO this week…instead, let’s talk about Christmas in general.

This week, I’m musing about some general warm and fuzzy feelings about Christmas Traditions!

So, as you guys know…I’ve got a couple of little kiddos.  Sam is 1 and Riley is 4.  Riley is very much into Frozen…and has been for a while.  Yes, we took her (and Sam) to see Frozen 2.  So this time of the year, she likes to play the Frozen Christmas Movie…Olaf’s Frozen Adventure.  It’s on almost every day at our house.  At least it’s only 30 minutes.  I’ll take her watching that over the full Frozen movie any day!

Anyway…for those who haven’t seen it…in the movie Olaf goes door to door in Arendelle looking for Holiday Traditions.  He sings a catchy little song (it’s Disney, what do you expect), that goes “Happy Merry, Holly Jolly, Seasons Greetings Here.  I’m wondering what your family does at that time of year…”

So on that note…I figure the Addicts Community is international.  And we ALL have different traditions and ways we celebrate the holidays.  So I want to know what you and your family do at “that time of year”.

As far as my house.  Well, you guys know I love Christmas.  And so far we’ve hit every one of our “pre-Christmas traditions” except for one.

First, on Black Friday (in some cases before) we decorate for Christmas.  This year, we did it the weekend before but saved putting the ornaments on the trees for Black Friday.

And our decorations, I would say are fairly American.  We have trees, garland with lights, and a few blow-up Christmas decorations outside.  Oh and that scout elf on the shelf!  Ours is named Mickey! (Riley named him…)

Every year we carefully go one by one through our ornament box and decorate two trees.  Yes, two trees.

One is a Disney Tree.  Filled with ornaments we’ve picked up on our many trips to Disney, or with ornaments, my husband has picked out for me or vice version.

The other is our family tree.  That’s filled with homemade ornaments from Riley (Sam’s still too little), Ornaments we received as wedding presents, other (non-Disney) ornaments we’ve given each other, and photo ornaments.  Every year we add another photo ornament to the tree, either of just the kids or of the whole family.  It’s a lot of fun.

Another tradition is the Gingerbread House.  We always decorate a Gingerbread House as a family and really let Riley show her artistic side.  (with mom holding the icing bag of course) And this year Sam even got in on the action.

And of course, we bake Christmas cookies.  Loads and loads of Christmas cookies.  We just finished that up this past weekend. Over 300 cookies.  Sugar cookies, peanut butter cookies, chocolate chip, and pizzelles. Quite a lot of baking!

The only “pre-Christmas tradition” we do, that we haven’t done yet is watch “It’s a Wonderful Life” with my mom. And we plan to do that one this weekend.  Such a great movie.  One of the classics.  It doesn’t get much better than George Bailey yelling “Merry Christmas” through the streets of Bedford Falls!

Beyond the “pre-Christmas traditions” it’s just simple things.  Every year my husband and I exchange ornaments, and we also pick out specific ornaments to match our kids’ personalities or something they did that year.

Then we spend all of Christmas Day in our PJs.  Eating great food and way too many cookies.

And that’s really it.  Nothing too crazy, but simple traditions that we love to do every year!

Now it’s your turn!  I want to hear what you do “at that time of year”! Do you decorate trees with real candles?  Do you hide the pickle in the tree? Do you go caroling?  Do you have a specific gift you exchange each year?  If you’re south of the equator, and it’s summertime for you, do you have a BBQ?  Go swimming?  To the beach?  Please, share your traditions in the comments below!

I love that this is an international community.  Sure most of the readers are from the US, and then Canada, but we have readers from all over the world on this site…and I’m really curious to see how you each celebrate the season!

And on that note, it’s time to wrap up this week’s musings.  I’m taking next week off from musings (and TSTO for the most part…there will still be posts, don’t worry), to spend extra time with my family.  My kids are little and they’re only that way for a little while.  So I’m going to soak up every possible second of fun with them this holiday season while I can! So, I’ll be back with another musings post in two weeks.

Enjoy the holiday time with your family guys!  Merry Christmas! Happy Holidays!  And I’m looking forward to seeing how you all celebrate “that time of year!” 🙂

25 responses to “Musings About Holiday Traditions…

  1. I love Christmas. This time of year, I am usually baking enough cookies, treats and cakes to feed an army to share with everyone. I’ve got eight kiddos and we have plans to decorate some new ornaments and also paint some wooden and stained glass ones as well. My husband fixed the lights on our fiber optic tree the other day, so everyone is happy about that.

    Merry Christmas 🙂

  2. Thanks Sandytoes!! 😃🎄❄️🎅 good to know a fellow Capricorn!! We are pretty awesome!!

  3. My Sis, friends and myself have decided that this year we are gonna do something different; between the 15 of us, we have gone through a lot, so decided to do something TOTALLY different, and NOT spend time with family. I live in London, UK, and everyone else is dotted around the world, but somehow we’ve managed to arrange flights etc and we’re going to my late Mummy’s house in Malawi for 2 weeks!! My Sister and I leave tomorrow and everyone should arrive by Monday. I say this to you all, I hope you have safe Christmas period xx

  4. Wow, Alissa – I can’t believe how grown up Riley looks now!

    We celebrated a secular version of Christmas (tree, presents, stockings, special Christmas Eve and Christmas night dinners, etc.) for many, many years, but eventually got burnt out/bored with it all (especially having to takedown the tree) and now just do the food part and the stockings (which just means candy, with a mandarin orange/clementine in the toe) and we’ll probably still listen to Christmas music and watch the Yule log on tv as we have breakfast on Christmas morning (as well as light candles on the menorah for Hanukkah). We don’t have kids, or famIly nearby, so no one is disappointed with our super minimalist approach to the holidays.

    Wishing everyone reading this a very happy holiday season!

  5. ah.. hm… for my family and I, this is just another month that needs to go by, my kid ruined other kids lives by telling them the truth about Santa, Its funny because when you think about it.. We teach our kids NOT to lie and we get upset when they do lie to us…. yet parents lie to their kids about this Santa… lol… and Easter and other things, so hypocritical..
    Anyways.. I play video games…. work.. since I don’t celebrate Christmas, I offer to work, so others that do celebrate it, can have their special time..

    • I prefer to think of it as keeping the magic alive…

      There’s nothing wrong with believing in a little magic. In my family, even the grownups still talk about the magic of Santa. We’re big into the magic of being a kid in our family…it’s kinda why we go to Disney so often! 🙂

  6. Thanks for the Holiday Spirit Alissa!! 🎄Christmas for my family is about birthdays! Of course there is the obvious birthday, there is also my husbands and mine. My husband’s birthday is Dec 13 and mine is Dec 23 so the foodfest at my house starts officially on the 13! This year we have added a new family member as my daughter just adopted a rescue cat named Gingerbread! Christmas is a reflection time for me about how lucky I am. I am a recovered addicted and this time over five years ago I was near death. Today I spend my time helping others and this time of year can be hard for some, so I do what I can to make the holiday easier for those who need help. Today I am truly blessed and grateful for all I have. A loving family and the ability to play this silly little game!! Happy Day Friends and Happy Tappin! ❄️🎄❄️🎄❄️🎄❄️🎄❄️🎄❄️🎄❄️🎄❄️

  7. Most of our Families have died off, so we’ve created our own Holiday Traditions over the decades (courtesy of John Waters Movies, old Network TV Specials, local Las Vegas, the Winter Solstice) –

    I. What We Watch

    Female Trouble (1974) when Dawn Davenport wants cha cha heels for Christmas? you better not disappoint her (here’s a meme, the YouTube footage features salty language and I don’t want to offend anyone)

    Mister Magoo’s Christmas Carol (originally broadcast on NBC on December 18, 1962) I think this is the 1st cartoon Holiday Special broadcast on Network TV (via UPA Pictures Inc.), we both ♥️ the soundtrack

    Jack Frost (originally broadcast on NBC December 13, 1979) it’s bittersweet and our favourite (from Rankin-Bass animagic)

    II. Where we go locally

    Our HOA is anti Holiday Decoration in front of your property (someone has no Holiday Spirit on that HOA board), we have cats so its a wreath display on the dining room table (leopard print) vs a tree, we dine out (I won’t ask her to cook if she doesn’t need to), we ♥️ the family friendly atmosphere at certain places –

    Ethel M’s Chocolate Factory Cactus Garden (mmmm free troufel)

    Sam’s Town Mystic Falls (nice selection of gifts nearby)

    El Cortez for Siegel’s 1941 (fine dining, fair prices)

    Frankie’s Tiki Room (thank you Lyft because the cocktails are very strong)

    III. What We Did In Celebration

    Our Holiday begins today (December 20th) with the Solstice, we treated each other to Bauhaus Live at the Hollywood Palladium already –

    We also visited Knott’s Berry Farm (Knott’s Merry Farm) with it’s down to earth Christmas Craft atmosphere + funnel cake with boysenberries n’ s’mores (mmmm boysenberries) + Snoopy and Woodstock –

    You could drop us both off at New Orleans Square (Disneyland), as we’d both be glad to stay there permanently (Haunted Mansion, Pirates of the Caribbean) … but we both work and actually the rest of December is filled with volunteering (Food Bank, Animal Shelter, Veterans Village), because we both feel it’s the best gift to make a difference in your community (and with that? may all feel the joy with their own celebrations) 😊 🎄❄️🦌🌟☃️🎅🤶

    • I wish you were my real life neighbor! Lol

      • Aww thank you … we’re definitely older than most who are active in various scenes and survivors (Mrs – thyroid cancer, Me – basal cell carcinoma / melanoma) aka “yeah cancer will come back so live a life the best you can ’til it’s your time to die” …. we’ve done our part to show you can have an alternative appearance and be good members of the community (don’t judge us on appearances, we’re working professionals, we just don’t look like it after work (lol) …. every day is Magical (so Grianstad an gheimhridh aka Happy Winter Solstice today!🦌❄️🎅🎄🌟)

  8. We are gong to my mother. She will decorate with some old decorations from my grandparents time. In addition to some 35 year old decorations made by me and my brother.
    We will eat traditional Norwegian food on the 24. and 25. “ Pinnekjott” ( stick meat from sheep) and ribbe (ribs). And traditional cookies: “goro ”, ” krumkaker” and Norwegian donuts.
    Merry Christmas from Norway

  9. We set up our tree the day after Thanksgiving. It’s been a family tradition for my entire life, it used to be my dad would do it. Then I did it with him. After he lost his battle with cancer it’s been a family event. My mom and brother put it up, mom does he lights, and mom and I put on ornaments. Mom then finishes it with lots of tinsel which she has done forever. Outside lights go up whenever we have the chance and will stay lit until January. We don’t travel at Christmas, but we do watch a lot of NBA, except my brother. We usually watch its a wonderful life as it’s my mom’s favorite. I don’t watch every year. We also try to get in the Muppets Christmas special if we can.

  10. My 2 monkeys are 16 and 12 now. Fortunately they still want to watch our yearly xmas shows…which we’ve added to over the years. Gotta watch Charlie Brown, Garfield, Patric’s claymation(watched that last night) the great non-Jim Carey grinch, Scrooged, Ralphie on the 24 hr cycle on xmas day, Mickeys Christmas Carol(a CLASSIC!), Rudolph, Frosty.
    This Sat. is cookie day…1st at my mom’s, then at my house. She’s getting older and crabbier but I’m making the damn cookies there if she likes it or not! Lol
    We all do Xmas eve at my folks….its been our official Xmas since my brother and i were little monkeys ourselves. Then its a more laid-back-in-our-jammies-quiet xmas morning with my hubby & kids. Then the 27th is my b-day and i get to make people feel guilty about using xmas wrapping paper instead of b-day wrapping paper on my gifts. Lol!!!
    Merry Merry Christmas everyone! Much health and hugs to all y’all!!#🎄🎅🎁💚

  11. National Lampoons Christmas Vacation is a must watch every year. One tradition we do each year when is watching a Christmas Story on Boxing day. With every extended family member that can come.

    One of those movies like frozen I guess you can watch over and over again

  12. Merry Christmas, Alissa! To you and all the addicts!
    We are pretty much the same as you. Decorate the tree so the cat can play with it. Gingerbread houses are next (each of us girls get a house), covered pretzels, cut out cookies and usually some other types of sweets. You are so right, though. Those kiddos are only small for a short time. I can’t believe my older daughter is 17 and the younger is almost 16. Enjoy these moments while you can!

  13. We set up the aluminum pole, air our grievances, and perform various feats of strength.

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