As a little girl, one of my favorite winter pastimes was driving through our neighborhood after dark, tucked into the back seat of the family van with my brothers, as my mom pointed out twinkle lights and lawn ornaments on the houses we drove past. I knew I could look forward to this small tradition every year, and it made the winter holiday season that much sweeter. As an adult, I keep this tradition alive with friends and loved ones to add an extra dose of magic to every December.
Our holiday traditions are as diverse, unique and special as we are, and Feather Girls know that it’s not the gifts or the sales that make this time of year special. It’s the cherished memories we carry from childhood and the ones we create with friends and family every new year. We asked you to share your most loved holiday traditions with us, and here’s what Feather Girls around North America had to say:
The one tradition that I legitimately look forward to is watching A Christmas Story on Christmas Eve and/or Day. Love the 24-hour marathon.
— Tracy S., Feather Magazine reader
One of my favorite traditions is making gingerbread houses with my best friend. We’ve done it every year since we were in first grade, including the years she’s been living in Israel via Skype!
— Nadia M., Feather Magazine reader
My sister and I used to open each other’s presents on Christmas Eve, my mom used to always buy a box of chocolates for Christmas Day for us to snack on, my husband’s family always bakes on Christmas Eve and we always go to Gatlinburg (Tenn.) the week after Christmas/New Years Eve.
— Nadine M., Feather Magazine reader
My co-blogger and I have a Christmas tradition where we each buy each other exactly 10 items from the dollar store. It’s so fun to see the ridiculous items we end up with!
— B. B., Feather Magazine reader
The Christmas season isn’t complete without a night of rum and eggnog, junk food and Christmas movie favorites like Elf, The Santa Claus and A Christmas Story.
— Sarah Kester, Feather Magazine Health Editor/Executive Editor
After we had celebrated Christmas at our own house, my mom and I would always go to my grandmother’s. Last year, though, Amma and some of my cousins spent the night on Christmas Eve at my mom’s house. We were able to spend the entire day with each other, starting a new tradition. It was so special to have our family all together!
— Ansley Pentz, Feather Magazine Marketing Assistant
Driving around on Christmas Eve with my parents looking at all the Christmas lights! Then sipping on some spiked eggnog when we get back.
— Lesley Anders, Feather Magazine Marketing Director
We have a whole box of menorahs and Chanukah decorations, and I love getting to pull out my favorite—it’s a little blue and white sailboat—and seeing the ones my family members light, too. We’ve been using the same ones for years.
— Remy Marin, Feather Magazine Assistant to the Editor-in-Chief
Every year, when we were little our parents would act like we were done with gifts and we’d start cleaning up the wrapping paper. Then, they would bring out the one big thing we’d asked for from wherever they’d hidden it. We still do it and my youngest sisters fall for it every time, just like we did.
— Brianti Downing, Feather Magazine Editor-in-Chief
I have two favorite holiday traditions:
1. We eat gumbo at my grandmother’s house every Christmas Eve. My grandmother is Cajun French and when she and my grandfather first moved to Texas, they could not afford to go back home, so she started to make gumbo when she missed her family. Then she started making it on Christmas Eve, and it’s something I’ve eaten every single year since I was a baby, and I plan to eat it every single year until I die.
2. Open presents on Christmas Day night. Its so crazy and hectic, so we decided a few years ago to wait until the day is over. We get up when we want, eat brunch, spend time with the extended family, then when everyone leaves, and its just us at our house, we open presents slowly and leisurely. Its so fun!
— Allison A., Feather Magazine reader
My family would always spend Christmas at my grandma’s house and my siblings, my cousins and I would all camp out in the living room on Christmas Eve. We would get really into it and bring sleeping bags, build blanket forts and stay up really late watching movies. Then after we opened presents in the morning, we all helped make a massive Christmas breakfast!
— Sydney Brodie, Feather Magazine Beauty Writer
Back in Australia (where I’m from), we have something called Carols in the Domain that my family and I would watch every single year. It would inevitably turn us to talking about how things used to be and we’d bring out old photos and slides and it was just fun. I miss it now that I’m in the U.S., but I want to start some new traditions here with my husband!
— Kristen W., Feather Magazine reader