5 New traditions that can make your family holiday special

mother with children

When the holiday season rolls around, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of shopping for gifts, cooking holiday feasts, and hitting up parties. But it’s also important to slow down and really savor this time of year with your family. Here are five holiday traditions you can start this year to help make lifelong memories for your family.


  1. Family cookie party. You can host a family cookie party a few different ways. Keep it simple and invite your whole immediate family to the kitchen for a day of baking and fun. Let each member of your family pick a cookie to create, then get everyone in on the action as you crank festive holiday tunes. On the other hand, you can invite your entire extended family to bake a few batches of their favorite cookie at home, then bring them in neat packages to swap for other cookie creations. This way, everyone ends up with a colorful variety of treats.
  2. Holiday light-spotting. Whether you pile into the family car or hop on the train, exploring the holiday lights in your neighborhood is always a fun pastime. If you’re taking the car, have the kids get all bundled up in their PJs and bring plenty of blankets to make the car cozy. Bonus points if all of the kids are asleep by the time you get back to the apartment!
  3. Kindness Elves. In light of the recent Elf on the Shelf trend, Kindness Elves have emerged as an alternative that’s totally rooted in the holiday spirit. Kindness Elves hide each morning of December, just like the Elf on the Shelf, but they’re accompanied by notes either praising kids for a kind act they committed the day before or filled with ideas for ways they can be kind today. It encourages kids to show the holiday spirit to others and learn what the season is really about.
  4. Exchange holiday PJs. Regardless of what holidays you celebrate, you can always find appropriately themed PJs for the occasion. Exchange them on the eve of the holiday and gather together for a family photo. It may seem cheesy, but you’ll love having that memory each year. It’ll give you a chance to see how your family has grown!
  5. Watch your favorite festive movies. Whether it’s an old school classic like A Christmas Story or a contemporary hit like Frozen, everyone has a favorite wintry film. Arrange a Saturday when everyone shirks any other responsibilities and snuggles up on the couch for a holiday movie marathon. You might be able to do this without even breaking out the DVDs, as many cable channels tend to line up the holiday favorites after Thanksgiving through the end of December. If your kids have never seen your holiday favorites from childhood, this is your chance to expose them to the classics.


19 Unique Family Holiday Traditions [BuzzFeed]

50 Magical Family Christmas Traditions [The Imagination Tree]

14 Family Holiday Traditions You Should Start With Your Family This Year [PopSugar]