It’s the holiday season…a woop dee doo! And it’s the last I Heart Old Towne Orange blog post of 2020. We wanted to end this year on a festive and positive note by asking the I Heart team to share some of their families’ holiday traditions with you. And of course, we want to see your traditions, so tag us on Instagram, @IHeartOldTowneOrange, so we can see how your family celebrates this magical time of year.
Now let’s get into the traditions!
This is a tradition that I started with my best friend/former roommate. Back in college, we always worked double shifts on holidays….which is never fun! But we knew other people were doing it too, so in solidarity, we always leave a really big tip somewhere random like a coffee shop on Christmas Day. It’s fun to see the surprise on the employee’s face and to show thanks for everything that they’re doing! I highly recommend visiting your favorite spot during the holidays and doing the same!
Every year my family likes to play a little game called white elephant. For those of you who have never played, I suggest you visit “The Official White Elephant” which explains the rules much better than I can. It’s pretty simple and definitely will spice up any holiday party you attend! If you have argumentative members of the family attending, this may not be the one for you (I’ve learned the hard way), but this year since we’re all keeping our circle small, game on!
We have so many traditions centered around Christmas it’s hard to choose. We do family white elephant gifts which is a blast, Christmas morning breakfast at my mom’s, and Christmas Eve at my grandmother’s. But the one I’ll choose is the Saran Wrap game with all the kids. We use one or two packs of Saran Wrap and wrap up little toys and candy until a huge ball is formed. Just tear big ole pieces and keep sticking things into the ball. You can do big things too. Then each player rolls the dice until they get doubles. Once you get doubles, you get the ball to unwrap as fast as you can until the person to your right gets doubles, then player passes. Anything that comes out during your turn is yours and there’s always a big money prize in the center. So much fun!
This is a fairly new tradition… so after many years of struggling to find Christmas presents, I thought it would be more fun, thoughtful, and a little easier on our wallets during the holidays to make homemade presents. If you know my family and friends, you know the way to everyone’s heart is FOOD! I made something called Bird Sh*t, which is a magical snack that I can’t share details on (or else I’d have to kill you). We’ve made it for several years now and everyone always asks if I’m making it for Christmas because they can’t wait.
For the past six or seven years, my family and I have been doing an EPIC gingerbread house competition. The kitchen table usually looks like an explosion of candy, fake trees, frosting, and hot glue sticks for about three days (not my mom’s favorite part ????). I’ve never won…but I think this is my year!
My family tradition is to sit around the fire and read/listen to the Polar Express. Most importantly, at certain parts of the story we ring the little golden bell when it is referenced in the story. If you can hear the bell that means the Christmas spirit is alive and well. We also drink white Russians, a great holiday beverage.
Every year on Christmas Eve my family sits around the Christmas tree and reads The Night Before Christmas. This tradition was passed down from my dad, who got it from his dad. My dad even still has the same copy of the book from his childhood. Even though I am 23 now, I still look forward to this tradition because I know it makes my parents happy, and I know I will be passing it along one day too. ????
And that is all for now, folks! We want to thank you, our readers, so much for sticking with us in 2020. Through everything, we loved finding new ways to celebrate our beloved small town and share all of the updates with you along the way. We have so much planned for 2021, but for now, we wish you a very happy holiday and an even happier New Year! As always, have a great weekend and we will see you around Towne.