Families can be fun, especially when you get them together for a holiday. Each has their own unique way of celebrating and building memories with their own holiday traditions.
Whether it’s Hanukkah, Christmas or even Solstice, here are a few fun holiday traditions you can incorporate into your own holidays this year.
1. Painting a Memory Menorah
In my friend's family, they always had a menorah growing up that they would paint. Each person would take a memory from the year and paint it onto 1/5th of the menorah. Once they were finished, they would all take a guess at what the other people painted.
The nice thing is that it leads to a story that each of them got to share. Some were from being out with friends. Others were from family vacations so everyone remembered together. The important thing is that they all got to bond and learn about what meant something that year.
Once Hanukkah was over they would put the menorah into a box with the others and store until next year when they could share it again and have even more great memories.
2. Family Pajama Photos (Even the Dog!)
Everyone thinks of and remembers those horrible matching family Christmas pajamas when you’re little. When you’re an adult they become a lot more meaningful. It's still one of those holiday traditions I'd like to start with my family.
My friend used to come over to my house on Christmas since she was Jewish and had nothing better to do. The family would always have a gift for me and I would bring one for them too.
They also included me in their other holiday traditions, except the family photo. I would play a photographer and take pictures.
3. Holiday Traditions with a Sparkle
This may sound like one of the silliest holiday traditions, but one of my friend’s families celebrates sparkle season. This is because the husband is Jewish and the wife is Catholic — so they needed something they could both celebrate. Plus one grew up in the northeast and the other on Lake Michigan, so moving to Nevada where there is no snow turned into something missing when they had their first kid.
That’s why this year I helped come up with an idea to bring the snow to them.
Here's what you need to bring the sparkle to you:
I gave them the idea of making cookies shaped like snowflakes and snowmen Christmas morning. They covered them in white frosting and added some that sparkling sugar dust.
Now they could have fun sparkling snow cookies to eat during the day, or they can save them for the evening when they open gifts.
Once the cookies are done, it’s time to get out your paper, glue, and glitter. Everyone knows how to make paper snowflakes and snowflake garlands, but a fun twist is to use spray glue and sprinkle glitter over them so that they sparkle.
Now your kids can decorate a room to make a winter wonderland that sparkles and have a fun snow themed party. Buy or make everything snow-themed and sparkly — preferably ice blue in color, not green like Minecraft party supplies.
Make Your Own Snow
Take some Suddenly Snow and let your kids (with adult supervision) start to make their own snow. It’s fun and you can teach them the science behind the product works which also makes it an educational activity as well.
Let your kids get creative by using different shaped vessels and food coloring to make snow tubes and designs with colored snow.
This is always a fun one. Take water balloons or regular ones and let them fill, but not stretch them with water. Now add in blue, green, red or whatever color food coloring you’d like.
Now fill a little bit more so that they are still small and tie them tight. Next, give it a couple small shakes so the food coloring mixes and place in the freezer. Once the water turns to ice, you now have fun egg-shaped ice cubes for your drinks or to play with outside. I like to think of them as Christmas lights.
Holiday traditions are fun, especially when you can add your own twist. Whether it is sharing memories or tweaking something boring into something original, you can always make them more fun. You can even take something you miss like snow and share it with your kids, even if you live in the desert!
What fun holiday traditions does your family have?