I am so excited about Julie and I's Tell Us About It linkup today! I have always loved Christmas, and the whole season just makes me so happy. Link up and tell us what your favorite Christmas traditions are!
The tree in downtown Seattle last year
Mystery gifts This is probably my number one favorite Christmas tradition of all time, and the one that needs the most explanation. It all started when my brothers were little and were obsessed with shaking their presents to try and guess what they were. One year, my stepdad decided to put a few rocks in a jar to mess with them. They couldn't figure out what it was. From that, it evolved into just getting really weird gifts for each other and making up confusing clues. My dad (stepdad) is the best at making up clues that make no sense at all until he explains them (and maybe not even then!). I always make him write my clues for me. Ha! We've gotten rubber witch noses, vienna sausages, bacon flavored gum... My favorite place to find my mystery gifts is Fuego because they usually have weird/funny gifts.
Old school picture in front of the Christmas tree. Yes, I know my overalls are cool.
Yorkshire pudding My mom always makes Yorkshire pudding with Christmas dinner and it is my favorite thing. It's the only time I eat it all year so I get waaay too excited about it! Also throwing mashed potatoes out there too because I pretty much only get those at Thanksgiving and Christmas!
Mexican food On the other end of the spectrum, Michael's family eats homemade Mexican food for Christmas dinner because his grandpa was half Mexican. His mom makes a really good green enchilada casserole thing that is amazing, and I just love Mexican food in general, so it's a fun tradition!
Yes, this is also a picture from last year. But I love this Christmas countdown thing! I bought it at Target last year.
Christmas movies I'm planning on writing a post with my favorite Christmas movies, but I love to watch Christmas movies with a blanket and a cup of hot cocoa.
Last year's mantle. Those hooks don't work on our new mantle so I can't hang our stockings until I get new hooks that work. Boo.
Christmas music I'm also planning a post about my favorite Christmas songs. It will probably end up combined with the movies post. But listening to Christmas music makes me so happy! I especially loved when I went shopping on Friday and all the stores were playing it.
Looking at Christmas lights I looove to drive and find the houses/neighborhoods that are super decked out. This guy I went to high school with majored in engineering and turned his parents' house into a light show a few years in a row. You would set your radio to their station and the lights flashed and changed along to the music.
Display in the window of downtown Seattle's Macy's last year
Christmas Eve PJ's This actually isn't a tradition of my family, but Michael's family gets to open a pair of Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve to wear that night and on Christmas morning. The first time I went down there for Christmas, Michael was trying to be all sneaky about it. He told me they got to open a present the night before and I immediately said, "Pajamas, right?" because it was a tradition in my best friend's family (and I think it's pretty common). I think me knowing rained on his parade. Anyway, I think this is a fun tradition and I would like to do it with our kids one day.
Christmas tree! I always loved going to pick out our Christmas tree! Growing up, we would always get a sevenish foot tall noble fir. Now that I don't live at home, my parents bought a fake tree. Theirs is fancy...ours is tiny and cheap and from IKEA. We also only have like fifteen ornaments. I can't wait until we buy a house, because then we'll get a real tree every year!
An artsy zoomed in picture of my parents' tree last year
Buying gifts I looove giving people presents! Money is tighter this year so it's kind of stress-inducing, but I still love to pick things out and see people open them. And speaking of buying gifts... Remember if you signed up for the Blogger Christmas Cheer Exchange that Olya and I are hosting, the deadline to ship your package is Monday, December 7th, less than a week away!
Holiday treats My mom makes tons of holiday treats. My favorites are probably her homemade peanut butter cups (they're actually bars, but we still call them peanut butter cups) and her raspberry pinwheel cookies.
There's so much else I love about Christmas, I could go on waaay too long! I really just love the feeling of the season. A lot of people get into the spirit and are more friendly and giving, which can be contagious.