Submitted Date 11/01/2019

25 Christmas Family Traditions To Enjoy This Holiday Season

Do you know which Christmas family traditions you are going to use this year? Are you searching for some new ideas? Here is a list of 25 family traditions you can use this holiday season.

Cookie Exchange – Get together with neighbors or family members to create a cookie exchange. Each family can make a different kind of cookie to exchange with the others. The number of cookies they will need to make depends on the number of cookies each family needs.

Christmas Candy Exchange – Another idea is to create a Christmas candy exchange with family or friends. One family can make larger batches of fudge while another makes more substantial batches of chocolate-covered peanuts. There are a variety of other Christmas candies that can be made, as well.

Family Fudge – If your family makes a favorite fudge recipe each holiday season, then consider continuing the family tradition. My adult children always look forward to mom, making peanut butter fudge for the holidays.

Family Cookie Recipes – As a family, you can make cookies together. Children enjoy making and decorating sugar cookies. They love creating their own designs with colored sugar and various icings.

Decorate Cookies – If you don’t have time to make cookies, decide to buy some already prepared cookies and decorate them to make them your own. This is another way to involve the children in the family tradition with very little prep needed.

Make Gingerbread Houses – Another family tradition we share in our home is making gingerbread houses. My adult children love doing this, and they look forward to the tradition year after year.


Food Bank – Consider collecting canned and boxed goods for a local food bank. The alternative idea is to spend some time volunteering to give food to the needy at local food banks.

Neighborhood Dinner – A neighborhood Christmas dinner is an idea to use as a yearly tradition for Christmas. This can include your closest neighbors or a broader neighborhood. The larger the dinner, the better planned it will need to be. Make it as trivial or as significant as you would like for the holidays.

Community Dinner – Volunteer time helping with a community dinner. Many homeless and less fortunate people will be visiting local churches to eat a warm meal for the holidays. Your family can prepare food items for the community dinner, or they can also volunteer to help serve.

Caroling Time – Get together with friends and take time to carol your neighborhood. Another option is to also go to the nursing units in your area and spend time singing Christmas carols to the residents.

Christmas Concerts – Visit a local or nearby Christmas concert if you enjoy music or musicals. Local theaters usually will have a line-up of possibilities for the local community.

Christmas Movies – If you are fortunate enough to have Christmas movies playing in your area, then you can visit the local theater. If not, then consider renting or buying some Christmas movie favorites.

Christmas Train – Riding a Christmas train is a great family tradition for the holidays. Nearby our small town, there is a yearly Christmas train we can visit. The location offers a train ride, Christmas shopping, hot cocoa, and things for the children to enjoy.


Visit Light Displays – Visiting local and nearby Christmas light displays is a family favorite for us. Every year, we try to work, visiting a few into our busy schedule. The children and adults can enjoy seeing beautiful displays celebrating the season.

Volunteer – Your family can also volunteer, giving gifts to struggling families this holiday season. Each community usually has one or two organizations that are taking donations and use volunteers to give gifts out to children and families in need.

Choose an Angel – Most Wal-Mart and Target stores support the Angel Tree program. A Christmas tree is located at the entrance to the store. Angels are on the tree listing items boys and girls want for Christmas. These families are usually lower-income families, and this is the only Christmas some of the children will come to know.

Family Ornaments – One Christmas family tradition for some households is to purchase a new Christmas ornament each year for the family tree. The decorations can be marked with the year of purchase for future reference and family memories.

Ornament Exchange – Holding an ornament exchange is a great tradition for the family. The transfer takes place among extended family members, work members, church members, or even among neighbors.

Write Letters to Jesus – Children love writing letters at Christmas time. They can write letters to Jesus about what they are thankful for. This is a beautiful family tradition to begin at an early age.

Christmas Crafts – Families with children can make a family tradition making Christmas crafts. Once created, the works can be kept within the family, given as gifts to friends and family, or given to others in need. Nursing home residents love getting these as families visit.

Create Homemade Christmas Cards – If your family loves to create crafts, they can also create homemade Christmas cards. Or, if you are short on hours, consider buying cards and decorating them to give to others.

Family Night – Holding a family night is another way to celebrate the holidays together. Weekly family nights before Christmas can include a game night, planned family outing, or even a family talent show. There are numerous ways a family can share time.

Family Photos – Taking family photos during the holiday season brings good cheer. It is a time of the family coming together to have a family photo taken. Some families will have a reunion closer to the holiday season, which includes taking pictures of all who attend the family reunion.

Buy a Real Tree – At the beginning of the holiday season, many families will visit a tree farm and purchase their Christmas tree. This is a beautiful way to kick off the holiday season as a family.

Family Decorating for Holidays – Spending time together as a family includes decorating for the holidays. Each family member can help in the decorating process – indoors and outdoors.

Celebrate Your Christmas Family Tradition

Whether you choose one of these Christmas family traditions or your own, Christmas is a time of togetherness. Take some time to plan whom you will spend time with during the holidays. Moreover, decide who you will be a blessing to!


Barbi Green


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  • Ashley Aker 4 years, 3 months ago

    When I was a child, my grandmother had a book, "425 things to do before Christmas" and eventually it became mine because I loved popping it open and picking something. I would also proclaim that as an adult I would do all of the items each year with my family. :) I love lists like this, and I have some new ideas now. Thanks for sharing.

    • Barbi Green 4 years, 3 months ago

      Thank you, Ashley! It is wonderful to hear you have some new ideas!