10 Easy & Free Christmas Family Traditions
10 Easy & Cheap Ways to Create Family Traditions
Christmas traditions, whether you love them or loathe them, are a beautiful way to create lasting memories with your family.
Not all traditions have to be expensive, like an annual family trip to the beach or buying everyone pyjamas for Christmas Eve. It’s totally possible to create Christmas traditions that are cheap (even free!), easy and fun for the whole family.
We’ve got 10 easy and cheap traditions you can start this year. And none of them include putting up the Christmas tree together or leaving cookies out for Santa. Because I’m sure you’ve already got those two covered.
1. Bake gingerbread
The smell of gingerbread baking smells like Christmas to me. You can take the easy option of making gingerbread men (or trees or stars, etc) or you can take on the task of building and decorating a gingerbread house. While a house is a little more fiddly, it’s great for families with older kids and there’s something so satisfying about looking back at your finished house. Before demolishing it and eating it, of course.
2. Watch a movie together on Christmas Eve
There are so many great Christmas films that are suitable for kids of all different ages. Gather the family together on Christmas Eve, matching pyjamas or not, and cuddle in for a movie. You could watch more recent movies like The Polar Express, Elf or the Grinch. Or go for a classic like Home Alone, A Charlie Brown Christmas, The Muppet Christmas or A Christmas Story.
3. Look at Christmas lights
A street full of Christmas lights is pretty spectacular (and hats off to the people who have the time to cover their whole house in lights). Thanks to Facebook it’s not hard to find an area near you with a great Christmas lights display.
4. Create a feel-good, non-chocolate Advent Calendar
Surprise your school aged kids by creating an advent calendar full of little love notes. Your notes can be short and sweet, listing one thing you love about your child for each day. This is also a fab way to teach your children that Christmas is about more than just receiving physical presents.
5. Make your own decorations
Pinterest is full of DIY decoration ideas. With babies or toddlers you can make salt dough ornaments with their hand or foot prints. Older children might enjoy creating ornaments from paper, making mason jar snow globes, or little snowmen from old socks.
6. Write a yearly letter to your child
Sit down and write a letter each year to your child. You might include your favourite memories of the year together, details of how they’ve grown, let them know how much you love them, or write down your dreams for how their future might unfold. Save them in their baby book or keep them all together for when they’re older. This one will be sure to be treasured for years to come.
7. Sing along to carols
Put on a playlist on YouTube or tune into the Carols in the Domain and have a little sing-a-long together. This is also a great time to wrap presents (as long as they’re not the ones from Santa) and if your kids are older they might like helping you with this too. Even if it’s just picking the wrapping paper or helping with the sticky tape.
8. Write a letter to Santa
This is best done early in December so that you can post if off to the North Pole. Don’t forget to include their Christmas wishlist! For bonus points, write a letter back to your kids but make sure you disguise your handwriting or get someone else to write it out for you.
9. Make cards together
You can be sure the grandparents will love receiving a handmade card. Break out some cardboard, some pencils and get creative. Even scribbles from your littlest ones will be treasured by the grandparents, or any other loved ones too.
10. Try and spot Santa
There’s two ways you can do this. You can head out to a nearby hill on Christmas Eve, once the sun has set, and watch the plane lights in the sky. You and your kids can try and spot which one of these lights is Santa making his way around the world. If you’re short on time or if it’s too close to bedtime, you can watch out the window for a few minutes and see what lights you can see glistening in the sky. You never know, you might just spot Santa in those few moments.
Whatever traditions you try with your family, I hope you all have a beautiful Christmas together.