I think we can all agree that traditions are the backbone and the truly magical element that brings this season to life. Each of us, finds ourselves doing out of the ordinary things in public and instead of feeling odd, we feel a sense of comradery from other festive souls. For instance, my siblings and I, year after year, go to the mall dressed in matching outfits to see Santa, for my family’s holiday Christmas card. Now while going to the mall is completely normal, going in matching tulle skirts at the age of 23; might seem a tad odd, but to see other adults in ugly sweaters doing the same brings a little joy to my heart.
To get to my point, traditions are the cornerstone of Christmas cheer, however, they aren’t always easy to come by. Family traditions are usually steadfast in your history but creating new holiday traditions for you and your fella, friends or even roommates, can be tricky to think of, at least that is how Matt and I felt. So we put our head to the grindstone to share 7-holiday traditions we partake in, in hopes to inspire you to start some of your own.
Now while Matt and I will be home in Connecticut and together for the holidays this year, a lot of December we actually spend working in Dallas. Between a new city and constantly being bogged down with work, tis the busiest time of year, Matt and I try to break up holiday festivities by celebrating some together in Dallas and some annual ones in New England. All and all this is our second Christmas spent together in our cozy apartment and it’s finally starting to feel like we have our traditions in place.
Okay so let’s jump into the Seven Holiday Traditions:
1) Festive Holiday Photo Shoot – Year after year, since starting this blog way back in 2013, Matt and I have done a Holiday Photo Shoot together. It’s by far one of the posts I revisit most often, and you guys can check out last year’s holiday photo shoot post here. Each year we try to step up our game but one thing stays the same, our Brooks Brothers get up. We both wear head to toe Brooks Brothers because no other brand understands traditions better than this historic fashion house. Last year Matt and I went with wool themed outfits, but this year we couldn’t resist the Red Fleece tartan items. We love how affordable the brand has made these timeless and traditional holiday staple pieces, and we encourage you guys to make time to add this tradition to your list.
2) Annual Movie Marathon – I usually spend Thanksgiving with my family in Connecticut while Matt spends his Thanksgiving in Dallas, but each year we plan our annual Christmas movie marathon for the day of my return. From the airport, we usually pick up boxes of Twizzlers, cookie dough, popcorn and Coca-Cola, before heading home to our couch to squeeze in our favorite holiday classics: White Christmas, Christmas in Connecticut and Home Alone.
3) Plan a Holiday-Hookie Day – I mean how could you not. Once a year in December, usually right before we head home to Connecticut, Matt and I plan a Holiday-Hookie Day. I’m guilty to admit that we do this, but it’s by far my FAVORITE tradition. We both call out of work and spend the morning exchanging our holiday gifts, followed by a trip to the mall (mid-day, so parking isn’t a hassle) and finish off the day by exploring Dallas along with purchasing a dessert or two. For me, this tradition is essential due to how hectic and stressful my schedule gets during this time of year, it’s an earnest reminder to stop and enjoy the season before it just passes us by.
4) Yearly Ornament Exchange – I’m big on putting up a Christmas tree, and last year Matt and I went headfirst into picking out the perfect tree. We went to a Christmas tree farm, picked out the most elegant tree, hauled it up to our apartment, put it up, decked it out with lights to find out we actually had no ornaments, oops. So we decided each year to exchange ornaments on the day we put up our tree, as a funny reminder of our first Christmas together. Come December, we each go out in secret to find the perfect ornament and exchange ornaments right after we light the tree. It’s actually a really fun and inexpensive way to kick off the gift-giving season. You can view my ornament haul video here.
5) Taking the Train into NYC before Christmas – Okay, this is by no means a new holiday tradition, Matt and I actually started this tradition way back when we first started dating in 2009. Each year we take the train to NYC to see the holiday lights, ice skate at Rockefeller, visit Eloise at The Plaza and head to Max Brenner Chocolate Restaurant for dessert and hot cocoa. This year we plan on stopping first at Brooks Brothers’ Red Fleece Cafe for some coffee and warmth before hitting the town. I’d love to hear what city you guys like to visit for Christmas below!
6) Piling into the car, in our Christmas jammies, to check out the local neighborhood lights – Matt and I actually did this just the other day! We piled into the car and headed to Wethersfield to see the festive home with the synchronized holiday lights to Christmas music. Now, if you are from Hartford County, I’m sure you’ve seen this home for yourself. Getting in the car and taking in your neighborhood’s holiday lights is by far one of my favorite ways to embrace community during the holiday season. I personally feel like I really get to know my neighbors and their traditions from the little lights and inflatable Santas they place delicately amongst and on top of their homes.
7) Drive until you find snow – Well this year we didn’t have to drive far at all because two weeks ago Connecticut had their first snowfall! Sadly, Matt and I missed it because we were wrapping up work in Dallas, so my family and I have made plans to drive up the New England coast until we find snow today! Whether that means driving a tad north or as far as Vermont is the greatest excuse to dust off our skis, take in scenic New England routes and explore the winter wonderland that is our home. I know a few of my friends in California have the same traditions and will be packing the cars up and onward to Lake Tahoe or Big Bear.
All and all, recreating annual traditions is by far my favorite way to feel connected, inspired and enthusiastic about the season and my current situation. It’s the perfect way to add perspective and acknowledge who and what really matters in the big picture, also it’s the perfect excuse to dress up or dress way down (Christmas jammies) all December long. Okay, now I’d love to hear from you all, what are some holiday traditions you revisit year after year? Let us know below. xx Aubrey
Shop This Post: