10 Christmas Eve Traditions

Written by

Our homes are dec­o­rated, our gifts are wrapped, and Christmas Eve has arrived quickly yet again this year!  With all the rushing around, it is good to take time to remember tra­di­tions, and the things that matter most to cre­ating lasting mem­o­ries.  While dis­cussing our plans for the hol­i­days, each of us at Clayton Gray Home learned some­thing new to try this year!  We are very excited to share these ideas with you to pos­sibly try with your fam­i­lies this hol­iday season…

10 Christmas Eve Traditions

1. White Ele­phant — when a guest RSVP’s to join you for Christmas Eve, ask them to bring a secret gift of a spe­cific denom­i­na­tion (this does not have to be a high amount, or it can be some­thing they would like to re-​​gift).  This year, we chose $25.  How it works: you pile all of the gifts on a table and then choose the youngest or oldest person to start by selecting one present.  After opening, the next person picks a mys­te­rious unwrapped gift from the pile or a gift that has already been unwrapped by a pre­vious person.  The fun­nier the gift, the better!  How­ever, it is better to go towards the end of the game because then you get to see more unwrapped and there is less of a chance of someone taking your gift!

2. Down­size Christmas Eve Dinner — don’t burn your­self out on the dinner before the Christmas Day feast!  Make it a Do-​​It-​​Yourself pizza night with rolled out dough and top­pings galore!  Or a one meal Crockpot dish you won’t need to slave over the stove preparing.  Depending on the size of your gath­ering — which “the more the mer­rier” def­i­nitely applies — ask each person to bring a potluck dish for an appe­tizer, side dish, dessert, or bev­erage. This is very impor­tant to del­e­gate so you don’t end up with a feast of only pies and green beans… it could happen!

3. Christmas Lights — after eating to exhaus­tion, go for a nice post-​​dinner walk through your neigh­bor­hood or load up the SUV’s to car­avan down the twin­kling streets.

4. Light ‘Em Up — be an elf for the day and pay it for­ward by offering a char­i­table ges­ture or lending hand to someone in need.  Donating money to char­i­ties and the home­less is always some­thing rewarding for all, some­times just writing a simple “Have a great day” in chalk on each of your neigh­bors dri­veway will ‘Light ‘Em Up!’  Stop by a local restau­rant and anony­mously pur­chase a family’s meal on Christmas Eve and then watch their faces light up with joy from the act of kind­ness from a stranger.  Here is the list from lil​lightomine​.com for more ideas:


5. Jammin’ Christmas Jam­mies - common tra­di­tion for many, but there are ways to make it more fun (or embar­rassing) for some:  *one­sies *matching *give girls the boys pajamas and boys the girls pajamas *give basic Hanes Tees with flannel bot­toms and then have a t-​​shirt dec­o­rating con­test.  ***In case you have not yet seen this very enter­taining home video: #XMASJAMMIES video: 2013 Merry Christmas from the Hold­er­ness Family

6. Per­for­mances + Inter­ac­tive Games — Mem­o­ries made of sweet com­ical mishaps, impromptu dancing, and singing are the ones that last for­ever.  Create new ones every year with:  Christmas themed cha­rades, Christmas Carole Karaoke, or a Nativity Play.  Cau­tion:  beware of cell phone videos and cameras!

7. New Year Goals Time Cap­sule - ask each child, mother, father, aunt, uncle, grand­parent and friend to write their goals for the coming year on a piece of paper and then lock them all up together in a safe place not to be read until Christmas Eve of the next year.  It is fas­ci­nating to see your accomplishments!

8. Bake — make cookies and have a dec­o­rating party to have all ready for Christmas Day Dessert and Santa’s Reindeers!


9. Christmas Movie — Wind down in your new PJ’s with a good Christmas movie and a glass of eggnog (or bai­leys).  Our favorite clas­sics are:  Home Alone (I & II), Elf, National Lampoon’s Christmas Vaca­tion, Scrooged, The Polar Express, Four Christ­mases, Mir­acle on 34th Street, and of course… A Christmas Story.

10. Christmas Book — if you have kids who are too tired to sleep because Santa is coming, let them open one present: A BOOK for you to snuggle and read with them by the Christmas Tree glow!

We always enjoy hearing from you!  Share with us your tra­di­tions below.

~ Merry Christmas Eve ~




Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *