December 2018
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Holiday Traditions to Start with Your Family
Make new holiday memories with these family traditions

The holidays are a great time to be with family, and part of the fun of the season is yearly family traditions. The simplest acts of togetherness, from preparing food to decorating as a team, can be exceptional tools to forging strong relationships and growing closer with members of your family. 

Making cookies

Baking cookies is one of the best-known classic holiday traditions not just because the end result is a delicious snack, but because it is a task that the whole family can get in on. If you choose the right recipe like gingerbread or sugar cookies, you can enlist your children to help make the dough, roll it out and cut it into shapes using safe cookie cutters. Once the freshly baked cookies come out of the oven, you and the kids can decorate them before distributing them amongst your family. This doesn’t just give your kids a sense of pride and accomplishment, but it allows you to create memories that they will carry with them to the day where they have children of their own, too.  

Holiday lights

Bright and festive light displays are a big part of the holiday season. If you like to adorn your home in lights to celebrate, you and your family can take an afternoon and put together your own light display. You’ll want to ensure that all of your lights and equipment are safe and up to snuff and leave the simpler tasks to the little ones while you handle stringing lights in high places. There is also the tradition of going out to see the lights with your family. Everything from downtown areas to zoos hold light displays during the holidays, which means you can gather up your family and head out for an evening of looking at the lights and enjoying hot chocolate.

Present hunt

Shake up the yearly gift-giving by turning the traditional opening of presents into a fun game. Hide a present for each of your family members and leave a clue to its location in an envelope. To add an extra layer of excitement, you could do this with one gift for each person and stage it as an after-dinner and before-bed activity the night before the holiday proper. If you want to be more elaborate, you can extend it to every gift and turn present-opening into a full-blown scavenger hunt.  

Special holiday dinner

Sometimes all you need to make great holiday memories is a special meal. A holiday dinner with all of your family is as key a part of the celebration as any, and while tradition tends to dictate a certain kind of meal, you could opt instead to do something that is more in line with your personal preferences. Instead of roasting a turkey or baking a ham, you could instead treat your spouse to a homemade beef Wellington. If you have a particular affinity for Indian food, you could try your hand at making your favorite dishes at home. This effectively creates a personal spin on a well-worn tradition, one that your kids may be inclined to pass down to their own children.

The best part about holiday traditions by far is spending time with your loved ones. Whether you decorate a tree with your family, invite friends over for eggnog and a gift exchange or just sit down with your significant other for a large cheese pizza and a holiday movie marathon, you can create a holiday tradition that will stand the test of time and live on in your memories.  



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Published by Central Bank of Kansas City
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