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8 Christmas Eve Traditions to Start This Year

Things to do on Christmas Eve

This is a sponsored post.

Tradition says that everyone puts out cookies and milk for Santa Claus on Christmas Eve. Do you?

We have a Cookies for Santa plate and a Carrots for the Reindeer plate, but we don't usually remember to put them out.

Sacrilege, right?!

We just forget because we have other fun things going on. So many, in fact, that you may need to start on December 22 to get them all in.

8 Christmas Eve Traditions to Start This Year

  1. Wear new pajamas. Joe and I started a new tradition when Grace was born. She got fresh new pajamas and a gift from Joe and I to open on Christmas Eve. The new pajamas are fun but mostly pragmatic. The kids go to bed wearing their new jammies, and they wake up and open their presents in the same. All of my Christmas morning pictures feature a family in matchy-matchy pajamas, and I am gaga for all things matchy-matchy. I love it.
  2. Open a gift from Mom and Dad. I don't remember why Joe and I started giving a gift from us. The kids get most of their presents from Santa on Christmas morning, but I think maybe we wanted something we could take credit for. It's usually a big gift: a camera, Hallmark's Bell and Posey, or an American Girl doll or twins set (this year!).
  3. Hang a Find Me Santa! snowflake. If your kids are away from home, do they ever worry that Santa isn't going to find them?
    We vowed early on that our kids would always wake up in their own beds on Christmas morning, but they still enjoy putting something out to remind Santa that they're here.
    Whether you're traveling or staying at home on Christmas Eve, the Find Me Santa! snowflake will give your kids peace of mind that Santa will spot them from the sky. It's a clear plastic snowflake that lights up when you press a button. Here are my kids demonstrating:

    And a close-up of their snowflake:
    Things to Do on Christmas Eve
  4. Make and sprinkle reindeer food. Reindeer food works with our Find Me Santa! snowflake to attract the sleigh to our house. We have made reindeer food for five years. It's easy to make and use. It's most impressive in the snow, but it still works without.
  5. Bake cookies for Santa. My family doesn't actually do this (because we always run out of time), but baking a fresh batch of cookies for Santa would make him extra generous, I think.
  6. Read The Night Before Christmas together. Make hot cocoa for everyone, get all dressed in your new pajamas, settle in a comfy chair together, and read the story aloud.
  7. Attend Christmas Eve service. Our church has a candlelight service for Christmas Eve. Many churches have one, so if yours doesn't, call around.
  8. Drive around and look at Christmas lights. Ask around and find out where the best ones are so you don't miss them.

What does your family do on Christmas Eve?

This post is sponsored by Hallmark. All opinions and text are mine.


Christmas Eve traditions

© 2014 – 2018, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.

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9 thoughts on “8 Christmas Eve Traditions to Start This Year”

  1. Our children are older and now have babies of their own. So for the couples we have a gingerbread house decorating contest. We have all day to work on it and the night of Christmas eve we post on social media for judging.
    For the littles we do thematching Jammie boys one kind girls another. Homemade cookies and a special party for our Elf on a shelf.

  2. My son gets a new pair of pajamas from Puddinghead Santa’s helper. They help him fall asleep. We bring Christmas arrangements to family and friends. We attend the family service at church. Then watch A Christmas Story and leave cookies out for Santa.

  3. We have a Christmas Eve box its filled with new PJs for everyone, a game, puzzle, movie and snacks to bring us all together for the night. The kids look forward to this tradition every year and start talking about what they think May be in the box as soon as I set it out December 1st.

  4. We sing Carols,read the Christmas Story from the bible. Then we go for a walk (even if it is freezing outside) on our walk the snowballs are flying and people are thrown into the snow banks.All except mom.We then come in for hot chocolate and home baked goodies and play board games.We finish the night with the movie A Christmas Carol. We have 5 children 3 boys and 2 girls now they are grown up and we still do this
    With our 5 our 2 daughter in laws and our son in law and our 2 grandchildren.

  5. Each family member gets new pajama pants and the family gets a new board game. Everyone changes into their pajama pants and we play the game while listening to Christmas music, eating snacks, and drinking hot cocoa.

  6. We do something together as a family to help others….not worried about “match matchy”. We are teaching our kids to be mindful of those in need. They receive gifts. But everyone includes one gift that has been handmade. Tonight, we are visiting a nursing home and taking small gifts, singing songs. Too much commercialism..consumerism….we do the next generation a disservice by how we live in the u.s.

  7. We have “Letters to Santa” – so there is a fire in the fireplace, Christmas music playing, oranges, nuts (and often bizcochitos – we’re from New Mexico!) to munch on, usually one Christmas story (traditional or not) read aloud, and everyone writes a letter to Santa. The letters don’t have to follow any formula – they might ask for actual items or intangibles, they might reflect on the past year or future (kids don’t usually do that but you never know!), and grownups take dictation for the littles who can’t yet write (though sometimes those little ones insist on writing their own anyhow!). When everyone has their letter complete, sometimes one or another of us choose to read ours aloud…but more commonly they stay private between us and Santa. Then finally everyone throws his or her letter into the fire where, as it burns, the smoke carries the contents directly to Santa. And we are now establushing the tradition of a book given to each person on Christmss Eve as well…

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