about me, Christmas

Getting Jolly – Christmas Traditions

Do you guys follow Alexandra? She is the sweetest and has been doing a Live Your Best Life link up the last two months and I have really been trying to incorporate some of her prompts into my life. Well, today she has a Christmas traditions link up. I just love Christmas time and hearing about what other people do for the holidays, so I thought it was the perfect time to link up for some holiday fun!

Growing up, my parents worked hard to give us the best life they could. We didn’t have a ton of money, and at one point my dad was working three jobs to provide for us. My sister and I never knew the difference though, because my parents spoiled us rotten at Christmas!!! There were always so many gifts under the tree, pretty much everything we asked for and then some. My mom always had lots of fun things in our stockings too. We watched all the Christmas movies, and there were several years that my dad really went all out with the outdoor decorations. He even made a custom Grinch scene for our yard. I know that presents and decor isn’t the important meaning of Christmas, but it is what made the season feel extra special to us as kids.

I want to carry on my mom’s tradition of doing fun stockings with my family.  My mom always baked a lot of goodies around this time of year, my favorites were her iced sugar cookies. Hers are the absolute best!!! I want to introduce Zoe to that recipe and get in to the habit of making them each season with her. Baking always brings back such fond memories of just being in the kitchen, talking, goofing around, listening to Christmas music.

Another tradition I would like to start next year is the advent calendar. There are so many fun ideas out there for them. I really like the idea of having a little celebration each day leading up to Christmas.

When we lived in Pennsylvania, my parents would drive us past the Overly light display every year. It started out at the Overly house and then it moved to an amusement park one year, and now I think they do it up somewhere big like the fair grounds or something. Anyways, I used to love seeing all the light displays and drinking hot chocolate. I hope to find something like that to do with Zoe next year when she can see better out the car window!

As far as decor in our home goes, I like to keep it fairly simple with a fake tree and clear lights. I am not too big into the colored lights. That is just my preference, nothing wrong with them. I always hang stockings over the fireplace and we have some garland as well. Chris and I love Snoopy, so we have some Snoopy Christmas decorations as well, though I didn’t get it all out this year. I also have a pink Disney Princess tree that my mom bought for me a long time ago that I have now designated as Zoe’s tree. I even had it set up in her nursery for her last year before we welcomed her into the world.

I remember my mom buying us ornaments each year to save for when we were older. It was always whatever we were into at the time. I have Care Bear, Strawberry Shortcake, Rainbow Bright, Smurfs, Blues Clues, Lady and the Tramp, Barbie, Winnie the Pooh, Snoopy, Scooby….so many different things that I was into over the years displayed on my tree  now. I plan to do the same thing with Zoe! Last year I bought her a 2016 ornament for her birth year. This year I am on the hunt for the perfect unicorn ornament since that was the theme for her first birthday. I want her to have these special memories every year when she puts up her tree, just like I do.

Each Christmas, we must watch Elf, The Grinch (both the cartoon and the Jim Carrey version), Home Alone, Home Alone 2, The Santa Claus, The Santa Claus 2, A Christmas Story and Bad Santa. I really love Miracle on 31st Street and usually find time to watch that at some point as well. I haven’t always watched Rudolph and Frosty as an adult, but I plan on introducing Zoe to them as well as Frozen.

Hard to believe these were from last year!!!

In the past, we always went to Chris’s parents house on Christmas Eve, his sister’s house Christmas morning for breakfast and my mom’s house Christmas night for dinner. This year we are doing things  a little differently and we have moved dinner with my mom to the Saturday before. We also plan to host it at our house this year. I am not quite sure what will be on the menu just yet, but I do plan to make my homemade lasagna.

Sometimes traditions change over the years, and I think that is totally fine. You have to be willing to adapt to different situations. But I firmly believe in keeping at least a few of the same ones alive year after year! So tell me, what is your favorite tradition each year? What is your most fond memory from Christmas when you were a child?

Previous Post Next Post

You Might Also Like


  • Reply Missy @MySh!ttyKitchen December 13, 2017 at 10:38 am

    Aw your parents sound like great ones! I would love to see this custom grinch scene he made! I have a tradition of watching White Christmas with my friends, a Jingle bell Brunch with my college friends and waffles for breakfast Christmas morning. Love hearing out others’ traditions so much!

  • Reply laura December 13, 2017 at 10:45 am

    We’d go to church on Christmas Eve, and then always go and look at Christmas lights around our neighborhood. We’d go home and have appetizers – a cheese ball and shrimp, listen to Mannheim Steamroller and open our gifts from each other. It is absolutely the best memory I have from my childhood, and we have kept the tradition going since being married. I love reading about what other people do too. 🙂

  • Reply Rebecca Jo December 13, 2017 at 10:46 am

    I love family traditions &Christmas memories. Love you’re starting your own with Zoe & trying to incorporate some good old loved ones.

  • Reply Biana @ Blovedboston December 13, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Absolutely love the ornament tradition and that you’re passing that onto to Zoe. Homemade lasagna sounds WONDERFUL for your dinner! I actually made one on Sunday and it was pretty good if I do say so myself LOL! xo, Biana BlovedBoston

  • Reply Carly December 13, 2017 at 11:05 am

    Love what you said about adapting to changes and different traditions because that’s so true. It sounds like you had the best Christmases growing up and I love that now you guys get to pass on your favorite things to Zoe. The little pink Disney tree is so fun and Zoe’s Christmas picture from last year is so sweet.

  • Reply Lindsay Latimer December 13, 2017 at 11:16 am

    These are such fun posts! I love hearing about everyone’s traditions, too. We always spend Christmas Eve with my extended family on my dad’s side. We draw names and do a gift exchange which I love! And my mom is the best with stockings! She still does them for us.

  • Reply Meg Taylor December 13, 2017 at 11:17 am

    My mom did the same thing with ornaments when I was growing up, but she just hid them all away. At my bridal shower, she gave me a huge box with all of them in it. I absolutely love them! Your princess tree is so cute, too.

    Meg, Borrowed Heaven

  • Reply Cara December 13, 2017 at 11:33 am

    Iced sugar cookies is one thing I’ve never been able to master, but I bet your Mom’s are amazing! I swear anything moms and grandmas make is always the best. Such a sweet photo of Zoe, and I know she’ll have just the best of Christmases with you all!

  • Reply Andrea @ Living On Cloud Nine December 13, 2017 at 11:34 am

    You know how much I love tradition and my heart beams for you knowing you want to create and continue these for Zoe! Oh that little Christmas angel, so hard to believe it’s been a year! LOVE the trees!

  • Reply Kate December 13, 2017 at 12:50 pm

    Oh my goodness, how is that pic already from a year ago?! Love the traditions you’re carrying on for Zoe! We’re doing the same with Serena with Christmas Light Hunting, alllll the Christmas specials, and of course baking <3

  • Reply Ashley @ The Wandering Weekenders December 13, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    It sounds like Christmas was always so special at your house growing up! We always had certain ornaments that we would get every year too, and I love adding those to my tree as an adult. I can’t wait until the girls are a little bit older and we can start doing even more Christmas traditions together!

  • Reply ShootingStarsMag December 13, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    What fun traditions, and you’re right, they can change over the years and that’s totally okay! I love watching holiday movies and baking cookies for Christmas. I also think stockings are really fun! I haven’t had one since I was a kid, but I gave them to my family one year. Little gifts are just kind of fun, you know? That little Disney tree is adorable!


  • Reply Darby December 13, 2017 at 2:08 pm

    I cannot believe that was her on the ottoman last year. WOAH time flies! I love her little pink tree 🙂

  • Reply Emelia December 13, 2017 at 3:00 pm

    Your childhood home sounds like mine 🙂 and yes to Overly- it’s so fun to see! We do the ornament tradition and I cNt wait to bake with Bella especially since Ethan enjoys it. Love this post 🙂

  • Reply SMD December 13, 2017 at 3:24 pm

    I hated decorating the tree as a kid and was always crapping out in the middle of the baking cookies (but not the eating of them) – some things never change!

  • Reply Alexandra December 13, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    YAY! So glad you linked up with us! I love the pink tree and the idea behind the ornaments. I always loved stocking best as a kid, and thought they were so exciting too! My parents also didn’t have a ton of money, but we always felt spoiled and loved. 🙂 Oh my gosh! How tiny is Zoe!! 🙂 SO CUTE! I love that you have traditions in mind that you want to keep going or start up again with her like baking together. Those moments are so fun, and I like to re-create them myself! 🙂 Thanks again for linking up and sharing! 🙂 Happy Christmassing! XO – Alexandra

    Simply Alexandra: My Favorite Things

  • Reply Audrey December 13, 2017 at 4:03 pm

    I love your trees and all the Christmas pictures. Your mom’s tradition of fun stockings and an ornament every year are so fun and creative! What a perfect way to carry the holiday memories into your adulthood! I hope you find that unicorn ornament for Zoe! That’s a great idea!!

  • Reply Danielle December 13, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    We have a lot of the same traditions as you did growing up and I love showing them to my girls. I love the pink tree. So pretty!!!

  • Reply Sierra December 13, 2017 at 5:31 pm

    What a fun post! I love reading about everyone’s traditions too. I am a clear light kind of gal too and we have so many of the same favorite Christmas movies. I love the idea of a tree like that with all sorts of memories. You are so right about traditions changing and being able to adapt. We decided to host Christmas Eve this year instead of Christmas day because so many of us have to work the next day. We thought it would be easier for everyone and no one would have to feel rushed because they are traveling from all over the state. Some people loved the idea and thought it was great and others were really upset at us and thought we were being unfair for not doing Christmas day. I’ve learned that you can’t please everyone, but being open to change is a big one for us. Sierra~Beautifully Candid

  • Reply Shea December 13, 2017 at 9:18 pm

    Aww, I love that your little girl gets her own pink tree. Maybe I’ll have to get little trees for my kids too–they would love that! We always do sugar cookies too, they’re the best! I love that picture of your little girl last Christmas–they really do grow so fast! Thanks so much for linking up!

  • Reply Dani December 14, 2017 at 11:06 am

    Pre-lit trees for the win! I just purchased some pre-lit garland for my mantle and porch too. We used to go around looking at Christmas lights too, but I don’t remember too many others. They’ve changed drastically over the years, but now it’s mainly to watch Elf, Love Actually, The Holiday, Bad Santa, Die Hard (which I just saw for the first time last year!), and It’s A Wonderful Life in my onesie with spiked hot chocolate and decorate the tree/wrap presents with Christmas music. I like to keep it simple haha. Sounds like you’ve already got grand plans for some great new family traditions!

  • Leave a Reply

    This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.