christmas traditions

cory's traditions:
  • the tree:  my family would drive together to a nearby tree farm in michigan, and cut down our tree.
  • christmas morning:  
    • we would wake up to santa's boot prints starting at the front door (since we didn't have a chimney), leading to the tree and santa's cookies, and then back to the front door (a mixture of my mom's creativity and a little baby powder).
    • us kids would wake up a little before our mom and dad, and we were allowed to open our stockings before they woke up.  we would inspect all of the wrapped gifts and try to guess what was inside all of the boxes until my parents woke up.
  • christmas evening:  we would have a big traditional ham dinner with my dad's family christmas eve, then do the same thing all over again with my mom's family for christmas dinner the next day.
  • movies:  all day christmas eve and christmas day,  "a christmas story" was on repeat on our t.v., and we watched "it's a wonderful life" every year too.

beth's traditions:
  • the tree:  a few weeks before christmas we would all go to a tree lot (we grow really great palm trees in florida, but not so much with christmas trees) and pick out a tree.  we would decorate the tree together as a family and reminisce of the years past, and which ornaments were our favorites (my mom would get us a special ornament to signify each year, like a car ornament when we turned 16, etc.).
  • christmas eve:  
    • my brother and i would go outside christmas eve and look up in the sky to see if we could spot santa's sleigh and reindeer in night sky.  the next morning we would wake up and search the front yard for reindeer prints.
    • our parents would allow us to open one gift of our choice christmas eve, in an attempt to ease our anticipation of christmas morning.
    • my brother and i would leave out milk and cookies, along with a special note for santa.  they would always be mostly eaten, and we would get a note back from santa (in handwriting that looked vaguely familiar to my mom's).
    • we would pile into my dad's truck, pick up a few hot chocolates, crank up the christmas music on the radio, and ride around town.  we would cruise through the fancy neighborhoods with beautifully decorated houses and brightly lit front yards.  this is one of my favorite traditions, all of those colorful lights were so magical to me as a kid.
  • christmas morning:  my grandma would come over christmas morning and watch me and my brother tear open our presents... then she and my mom would sit on the floor and help us put them together or play with us for hours.  meanwhile, my dad cooked a huge breakfast (it's all about food in my family, and i'm okay with that).
  • christmas evening:  we would join the rest of my mom's family later that day at my grandma's house for a delicious christmas dinner complete with turkey and her famous macaroni and cheese! 
  • movies:  we would watch all the christmas classics, my favorites were "the grinch", "a charlie brown christmas", "the christmas toy", and "one magic christmas".

our new traditions: 
  •  the card:  take a fun family photo every year (like the one above) to use for christmas cards to send our friends and families.
  • the tree:  
    • drive to a christmas tree farm in the appalachian mountains in the western part of north carolina, and cut down a tree together(as seen in my last post).  then come home and decorate the tree together with our childhood ornaments, as well as our new ones we've collected together as a family.
    • pick out a new ornament together every year, signifying something important that happened that year (i'm thinking this will be a good one for 2014).
  • christmas eve:  
    • the night before christmas, i like to prepare a vast setup of different appetizers, specialty cheeses, crackers and wine.  lots of wine.
    • when there are baby trottiers running around, we will all wear matching pj's to bed christmas eve, (which will make for super cute photos christmas morning).  yes, i realize this is cheesy... and my family will just have to deal with this.
  • movies:  continue watching the classic movies listed above (except i'm hereby removing "the christmas story".... ugh, never liked it).

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