Monday, December 19, 2011

Making Memories

Do you have Christmas traditions?   Maybe a favorite family recipe.  Or a classic Christmas movie you watch with your family.  Have you started any new traditions with your loved ones?  A new ornament added to the tree every year for each of your children.  Or venturing out into the woods to cut your own tree.  Ah, we tried that last one once, and it was enough for us.  The snow was up to our thighs, the girls were cold and crying, and Julie got a rash wherever the freshly cut pine tree touched her.  It was not a scene from a Norman Rockwell painting.  No, it was more like the flat tire scene from "The Christmas Story".

A tradition we started a few years ago is to line the snowbanks along the sidewalk with luminaries on Christmas Eve.  I put them together with simple white paper bags, an inch or so of sand to keep them from blowing over, and inexpensive candles in a glass votive cup.

For some unknown reason, it has become our son-in-law Jeremy's job to go out into the freezing cold night to light the candles.  And he does it so well!!!

He lights the candles at dusk and they will still be glowing in the early morning hours. 

A tradition started at Bill's parent's Christmas Eve celebration is one of our favorites that we are now carrying on at our house.  The dice game.  You know, the one where each guest brings a wrapped gift with no tag and you sit in a circle around the gifts.  You then take turns shaking a pair of dice until everybody has a prize.  To win a prize, you must shake doubles or a combination that adds up to 7.  

We set a price limit for the gifts, which I usually exceed when I find the perfect vintage item to wrap for the game.  And, let me tell you, this year's gift is a doozy!!!  Bill traditionally buys lottery tickets that our son-in-laws fight over ( it also includes a golfing photo in a frame that they have to display in their home for the upcoming year :@ ).  Oh, I forgot to mention that after everybody opens their gift, we set a timer for 2-3 minutes.  Once again we pass the dice, and if you shake doubles or 7's you can switch your gift for one that you would rather take home.  This is a fun game that will liven up any party!

 Last year, with the arrival of our first grandchild, we started a brand new tradition with a visit from....

Santa!!!  He looks vaguely familiar to me.  As you can see, Finley was not too impressed when she was just a few weeks old.  This year she will be 14 months and Mack will be almost 8 months old when we finally have our Christmas in mid-January!  I think their reaction to Santa's visit will be quite different from last year's nonchalance.  Actually, I'm putting my money on lots of.......well, crying.

  Time will tell.

So this year, bring back a tradition from your own childhood, or better yet, start a new one!

Written by Mrs. Claus.  :@


  1. Vicki,
    your house looks gorgeous lit up after dark! What a "handy" son-in-law to do the "cold" work! He certainly does an excellent job! Your family traditions sound like a lot of fun, especially the dice game. Things like that are what makes the Holidays special!
    Merry Christmas

  2. Your Christmas festivities sound so fun...I'd like to get our group playing the dice game! I love the candles...your home is really lovely! Do you have snow? We will have a brown Christmas here this year!

  3. Hey! I think Mrs. Clause should dress up this year, too! ;) HAHA.

    I can't even remember Finley that little! Oh my goodness. :) Wow. Seems like forever ago that we were celebrating a Sioux Falls Christmas with newborn Finners and me newly pregnant.

    Mack is SO excited to see Santa. We are going to visit "Pretend Santa" this week at Southdale, but he is excited for the real thing in Jan! ;)

  4. I love family traditions. Now that my girls are scattered and one has her own child they are starting their own traditions. It makes me so happy to see them doing this. I will have a Christmas with Tiger on New Year's and I can't wait. Hugs, Linda

  5. Loved this post! The poor son-in-law doing whatever it takes to make sure his inlaws like him!!!! lol Fun times.

  6. Pretty! Too bad we have a brown Christmas this year, Things just don't look as good...sigh.

  7. You have snow?! None here. Those luminaries looks so pretty glowing out there in the darkness.

    We always used to play the dice game fun :)

  8. your home looks beautiful all lit up! i love the luminaries, maybe, i should try that next year:) have a wonderful xmas with your little ones, vicki!

  9. I love the idea of lining the sidewalk with candles it is so effective. Thank you so much for sharing. I have enjoyed looking around your special place. I will follow on my way out so as I can keep in touch. I hope you will find the time to pop over to my place soon and do the same. Whilst I am here I would like to wish you a very Merry Christmas and look forward to engaging and supporting you more in the New Year! Cheers SpecialK XoXo

  10. You play the swaping or "swiping" gift game? Funny. We did that one year and it was alot of fun and craziness. ;-) My son-in-law's family plays the dice game and have lots of fun.

    Happy Holidays!

  11. The house looks so pretty with all the candles bag lit up. Great idea. You are lucky to have snow at Christmas. We've only had it a handful of times here in Columbus.


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