Some of our holiday traditions — yours?

By Caitlin Kelly


For some people, the holidays are a time of dread and loneliness, for others a riot of celebration.

We’re spending this Christmas at home. My mother and I have no relationship and my father (again) and I are estranged; last year we drove up to Ontario and had a lovely time with him and my half-brother and sister-in-law.

It’s been a difficult year financially — lower income and much higher health insurance costs have made this a low-budget holiday for us.

We might go next door for Christmas dinner to the Castle, (yes, it’s a castle!), a gorgeous hotel. It’s a rare, elegant treat, as cooking a whole turkey only for two seems a bit much.

A few of our holiday traditions:

— sending cards, with a letter, to about 40 friends.

— covering the back of our apartment door with every holiday card as it arrives


— savoring a fresh-cut pine tree, covered with winking lights and ornaments we’ve enjoyed for years (that smell!)

— scattering fresh pine boughs atop our cupboards and armoires


— hanging a  wreath on our apartment door

— listening to a holiday mix-tape Jose made a few years ago


— enjoying these delicious German biscuits, which my late granny introduced me to

— attending a Christmas church service, belting out all my favorite carols

Christmas Eve has been a less-lovely memory for me since I was 14 and had a terrifying experience that night in Mexico. (I’m fine now.)

So Jose re-branded it by proposing after midnight church service, as the snow was hissing all around us.

What are some of the ways you enjoy the holiday season?

8 thoughts on “Some of our holiday traditions — yours?

  1. small pine tree covered with animal ornaments, holly, tiny village created by my grandfather, christmas eve buffet with family, sleep over, and movie and chinese carry out in pajamas, after christmas morning gifts from santa.

      1. thanks, i think i’m going to write about it, so i’ll have a picture with my post and there is an interesting story behind it. i have two of the surviving original buildings, glass ice rink and tree. my brother and sister each have pieces as well. you’ll see it soon. ) have a great holiday –

  2. Pingback: [BLOG] Some Sunday links | A Bit More Detail

  3. Around this time of year, in addition to the normal Hanukkah traditions, my mother decorates her place to the nines with Hanukkah stuff. We get together, give gifts (I made CDs for my family this year), laugh and hug. On Christmas, we might go out for Chinese food or rent a movie or both. I like to watch the Doctor Who Christmas Special, because I’m a huge nerd.
    But since I’m on my own for the first time…who knows? I may try to start some new traditions. Maybe I’ll go out to a bar with some friends one night and just enjoy myself. We’ll see.

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