Whether you celebrate by opening one present at a time or if you like to head to Midnight Mass, it’s always special when it’s something to look forward to every year.
Personally, I always make french toast casserole that morning. It’s something my kids absolutely devour! When we open our presents, if there is a candle, we always make a point to have everyone smell it and overexaggerate their feelings. Lots of OOHs and AAHs which, of course, brings on a few belly laughs.
My biggest holiday tradition is having the 7 fish dinner as the main course. We’ve done this for generations and it’s just so special to serve it to my children. Here are some other ideas you can enjoy with your loved ones:
Christmas Eve Traditions The Entire Family Will Enjoy
There are many different traditions that people follow on Christmas Eve. Some people like to stay at home and open one present each hour, while others prefer to go to church services or have a large feast. No matter what you choose to do, Christmas Eve is a special time that is full of memories!
Sprinkle Reindeer Food on Lawn On Christmas Eve
According to legend, reindeer love to eat magical food that is called “reindeer food.” You can make your own reindeer food by mixing together some oats, glitter, and peppermint extract. Then, on Christmas Eve, just sprinkle the reindeer food on your lawn, It will help guide Santa’s sleigh as he delivers presents!
Attend Christmas Eve Mass At Your Local Church
Going to church for the Christmas Eve service is a very common tradition. Many churches hold special masses that are open to the public, for people who aren’t members of that particular congregation. If you can make it out in time, this could be a wonderful way to spend the evening before Santa arrives with the whole family! It’s also a special place to listen to Christmas music.
If you can’t make it to church, there are plenty of virtual mass options available today.
One Family Opens Presents Each Hour On The Hour
The chaos of opening presents. Who got what? I couldn’t tell! I was too busy picking up the wrapping paper.
How about it everyone takes turns – opening up one gift at a time – and doing it once an hour? It’s a great way to stretch out the fun. Make sure you have lots of room in your living room!
Re-Gift Presents You Don’t Want or Need To Friends Who Will Use Them On Christmas Morning
If you have gifts that just aren’t your style, but are still in good condition, you could re-gift them to friends who will use them on Christmas morning instead of letting them collect dust in your closet. This very simple idea is a lot more fun than simply returning the gifts to the store!
Some people might be uncomfortable with this idea, but if you’re able to find people who will truly appreciate your gifts, they can make for wonderful surprises on Christmas morning. Just make sure that everyone is clear about what’s happening when they open their presents, so no one feels offended or hurt in any way!
Watch The Yule Tide Log On TV
If you want to watch something special on Christmas Eve, you might want to tune into the Yule Tide Log. This is a tradition that started in the UK, and it features a fireplace with a burning yule log. Many families like to watch this together, as a way to get into the holiday spirit. Saint Nicholas approved!
Make Gingerbread House
Another fun way to spend Christmas Eve is by making gingerbread houses together. This activity can be messy, but it’s definitely a lot of fun! You can find all sorts of different gingerbread house kits at your local store, or you could make your own design from scratch. Either way, it’s sure to be a memorable experience! Be sure to eat your creation on Christmas Day.
Drive Around Your Neighborhood Looking At Christmas Lights
This is such an easy thing to do and the kids always LOVE IT. At the end of the night, while you are digesting and waiting to open presents, consider driving around town looking for pretty Christmas light displays. I’m sure your neighborhood is filled with so much creativity! Don’t forget the hot cocoa and candy canes for the trip. And while you are at it, put on some Christmas jammies and get comfortable.
Make Christmas Cookies
What is dessert without a few trays of Christmas cookies – ones that Mrs. Claus would be proud of! Work on a fresh batch of cookies for Santa Claus and be sure to leave him enough options. That way, when the big day comes, he rewards you with plenty of presents.
- Homemade Italian Cookies Recipe – Your Grandma’s Italian Wedding Cookies
- Chewy Crunch Peppermint Cookies
- Brownie Mix Cookies Recipe
- How To Make Snowball Cookies Just Like When You Were A Kid
Go Christmas Caroling
Silent Night. Holy Night.
Our local church actually sets up a night for Christmas carols a few days before the big day and it is so much fun! If you want to start new family traditions that everyone will look forward to, be sure to add singing to your list!
Be sure to wear your favorite Christmas pajamas. It’s truly such a magical time of year when caroling gets included. One of the best ideas we’ve ever done.
It’s a popular tradition to say Christmas prayers before the family meal. You can find a number of different prayers online, or you could come up with your own. This is a great way to get everyone in the Christmas spirit, and it can be a very meaningful experience for all involved. The important thing
to remember is the true meaning of why everyone has gathered and prayer is a great way to start.
Ugly Christmas Sweater Competition
An ugly sweater competition is a fun way to kick off the night. You can either choose whether or not you want guests to bring their own sweaters, and you could even charge an entry fee and award prizes for the best-looking sweaters.
There are no hard and fast rules for how these competitions work, but it’s sure to be a lot of fun! And believe me, even the older kids will still want to get involved.
Christmas Light Scavenger Hunt
I actually have a great holiday scavenger hunt on my blog that you can print out and use on the special night. On December 24th, be sure to include this new tradition and leave everyone in your reindeer dust!
Christmas Movie Marathon
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! While the food is cooking, why not sit down and watch some of your favorite holiday classics? Christmas movies are a timeless tradition, and they can be watched any time of the year. So, why not make an evening out of it?
What a great way to spend quality time together. A fun game that you could play on Christmas Eve is charades. You can either choose to set some rules about what movie or TV show everyone tries to act out, or you could just let people go for it!
This is sure to get the family laughing together in no time! Looking for more ideas? Here are some family game options to consider:
- Christmas Would You Rather Questions For Kids
- Christmas Charades Party Game – Free Printable For The Holiday
- 25 Festive Christmas Party Games To Play With The Family
- Christmas Bucket List – 40 Family Fun Activities To Do With The Kids
Christmas Eve Traditions Around The World
- The Norwegians create straw stars in their kitchens and place them around the house before Midnight Mass. This tradition symbolizes light and hope as we enter a new year.
- The Finns like to eat something called “laskiaispulla,” which loosely translates as “Shrovetide Doughnut.” It’s a sweet pastry that is filled with whipped cream and jam, and it’s popular during the Christmas season.
- In Spain, Christmas Eve is when people eat their largest meal of the year. This feast typically includes many different types of seafood, as well as ham and chicken. Dessert is usually a fruitcake called “torrone.”
- The Germans celebrate Christmas by opening one present each, and then going to Midnight Mass.
Regardless of what you do on Christmas Eve, it’s sure to be a special and memorable time!
There are so many ways to celebrate Christmas Eve! No matter what you choose to do, it’s sure to be a memorable time. So, start planning now and make sure that you take advantage of all the wonderful traditions that this special holiday has to offer! Whether you have younger kids, older ones, or just meeting all adults, it doesn’t matter. These fun family traditions can be enjoyed by all. It’s the perfect time to celebrate the holiday season.