Top 10 American Christmas Traditions
Every family has different traditions during the holiday season. For some families, one holiday tradition may include an uncle getting dressed up as Santa Claus. In another family, Christmas Eve dinner may top the tradition list. Some traditions are passed on from generation to generation, while others are created as families grow and change. While there is no way to create a comprehensive list of traditions, the following list highlights ten traditions that are representative of American families celebrating Christmas.
Number 10: Caroling. This tradition may not be as popular today as it once was. Perhaps it's because too many people live in the suburbs, where houses are far away and neighborhoods are not as close knit as they used to be. But singing among family members and classmates still tops the hearts of many folks. Many of us can remember caroling around the nursing home with our friends or bundling up to hit the streets on a cold winter's evening.
Number 9: Greeting Cards. What American holiday would be complete without greetings cards? The first Christmas card appeared in London in 1843 and became popular in America around 1875. Today many families send Christmas cards to their friends and family across the United States and even around the world. Some busy families include personalized letters reviewing the past year for their loved ones, while other families prefer to send cards featuring a recent family photo.
Number 8: Shopping. Christmas shopping season officially begins the day after Thanksgiving and continues until Christmas day. To some folks, it's the most enjoyable part of the season. To others, shopping is one big necessary headache. Internet shopping has recently changed the face of holiday shopping forever, and men across world have been cheering! But no matter how popular internet shopping has become, nothing can compare to an old fashioned holiday shopping trip to see the lights, hear the bells, and smell the holiday excitement.
Number 7: Movies. For many families, the month of December becomes one long trip through Christmas movie nostalgia. Not only do the TV channels rebroadcast all of the old favorite Christmas movies, but the true movie-fan family also has DVDs and tapes of all their own favorites. Whether you fancy Rudolph or George Bailey, movies help families gear up their Christmas spirit in the days leading up to the festive day.
Number 6: Party. Christmas parties have become an essential part of the American holiday season, and the office Christmas party is a notoriously good time. The Christmas party can be one of two things. One, the party can be the chance to see old friends and colleagues, and make new ones under the mistletoe. Or the Christmas party can be a chance to create stories for the rest of the office to share over the New Year.
Number 5: Eggnog. This holiday treat is often linked to Number 6, and perhaps is a lot of the problem with Number 6.
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Have a family picture taken with Santa and print it on a newsy letter to family and friends letting them know the important milestones you have passed in the last year to replace the usual Christmas greeting card. Let the children help write the letter and include all their memorable events.
Start a tradition of decorating an outdoor tree for the birds and other creatures. It doesn't have to be an evergreen the bare branches of any tree will look festive and provide a winter meal. String popcorn and drape the branches of a tree in your yard. Spread peanutbutter on a pine cone and then roll it in wild bird seed. Cranberries and raisins can also be strung on heavy button thread and a small basket of dryer lint will help some small creature to insulate his home in the cold winter.