My favorite holiday of the year is Thanksgiving, because it is a time to spend with family and friends! It is a time to be thankful, to hug those loved ones you don’t see enough, and to eat delicious food! With that being said my second favorite holiday is Christmas and for a lot of the same reasons! Part of my love for these holidays comes in the form of traditions! I look forward to these things every year and I thought this year I would share some of mine with y’all.
1. Picking out our tree: Each year a few days after Thanksgiving we go to the North Carolina mountains around Boone, and cut down our very own fresh fraser fir tree. My mom goes with us each year and we normally stop at one of our favorite restaurants, Our Daily Bread, for some hot soup after being out in the cold.
I also get two trees, our big tree that goes in the living room. Last year it looked like this.
We also get a small tree to display our collection of ornaments from our travels each year. Our collection has grown a lot since we started. We decorate this tree together and it reminds us of all of our memories. It is always so special to us to relive all those good times around the holidays. We have ornaments from when we first started dating to the most recent trip we took this summer. I’m already excited to decorate this tree.
2. Baking day: Who doesn’t love to bake around the holidays? Each year the girls on my side of the family get together and have a baking day. We each bring at least one recipe and all the ingredients needed to one of our houses and each make a treat. Depending on the year we have anywhere from 5-10 different dishes that we split up and take home to enjoy. The really great part is that we normally try new recipes so if you don’t like it, you have plenty of other options. I may gain 5 pounds each year from this but hey, New Year’s resolutions are just around the corner!
3. Light show: Christmas would never be the same without lights!! Each year we go to a neighborhood light show/ toy drive. A neighborhood outside of Charlotte, NC hosts a decoration contest and collects toys at the entrance. We have watched the lights each year for the last three years but it always makes me so happy. Last year Haylie and Cole joined us. This year I think Daniel’s parents are going to come along! We also like to decorate our house with lights, this was two years ago. Hanging off the ladder may not be Daniel’s favorite tradition, but he does enjoy coming home to our lights each night.
4. Game night: So Daniel’s grandparents live close and will turn 90 this December, they are amazing!! They go to bed somewhere around 7 each night, but on Christmas Eve they stay up and play one round of Mexican Train Dominoes with us and we eat nothing but junk food for dinner. They stay until the game ends, this gets pretty late some years! It is always full of laughter, and it never fails that I laugh until I cry at some point. Christmas just wouldn’t feel the same without this tradition, best part is we have a golden domino trophy that the winner gets to keep all year. It’s pretty serious, I know! 🙂 Pop, pictured below is the current trophy winner but would tell you all day he doesn’t know how to play, hehe.
5. Jumping in the pool: Daniel and I wake up and do Christmas together at our house and then head to my hometown to do Christmas with my family! This is always fun because our family has a tradition of swimming across my Mema’s pool. Let me tell you, that water is cold!! I’m not sure when this tradition started but I can always remember my uncles doing this when I was younger and I loved it. It was always just the guys for years but now that we have all grown up it rotates each year between the guys and girls. This is the video of us doing it a few years back. I missed Christmas last year with my family due to the flu but you better believe I’ll be making it this year.
6. Family Breakfast: Lastly, the day after Christmas. My favorite meal is breakfast and my uncle happens to make the best breakfast. On the day after Christmas we eat breakfast at this house with his family. It is such a special way to end the holiday and remember how important family is!!
However you plan to spend the holidays, just relax and have fun! I’m personally so excited for all of my traditions!! Do you have any really good traditions? I would love to hear about them!