December 20, 2017 Holidays What are your Favorite Holiday Traditions? When we were little kids, I remember waking up on Christmas morning at the crack of dawn and sneaking into my sisters’ rooms to wake them up, or vice versa. Then we’d all go into my parents’ room and wake them up, much earlier than they’d like I’m sure! My dad would always go downstairs first to turn on the lights and make sure Santa had come—surprise, surprise—he had! Then the craziness would start. We’d rush downstairs, eyes wide like saucers, oohhing and aahhing over what Santa had brought us. Before 8am, all of the presents had been opened and we were busy in our pajamas playing with new toys. It makes me laugh to look back and think about how quickly the day we’d waited all month for was over. Of course, it wasn’t really over. We’d have dinner at our house or go to our grandparents, but wow, was it a whirlwind. While those days are fun and I look forward to doing them with our own family, I much prefer Christmas as an adult. I still look forward to the holiday, but the reasons are so different. My favorite part about the holidays is getting to see my family. On both Rob’s side and my side, we’re all spread out across the country. The holidays are one of the only times each year that we all get together for several days. I also love how relaxing it is! No one wakes up super early to open presents. Instead, the mornings start slow, with a family brunch and lots of coffee! There’s no rush to get anything done or get to someone’s house for the next event and pajamas are considered acceptable until at least noon. We open gifts, but there’s not nearly as many of them—thank goodness! But, I do really love seeing my family’s expressions when they open a gift from me that I know they’re going to love. Our Christmas meal is a somewhat simple affair and if we’re in Dallas, we also celebrate my grandma’s birthday since she was born on Christmas day! Overall, it’s super casual and relaxed, and I absolutely love that. Each year is a little bit different though. The only tradition that seems to happen every year happens on Christmas Eve. We’ll go to the afternoon or evening church service and then have tamales and this Mexico City Style soup for dinner! Do you have any holiday or Christmas traditions that you love? I’d love to hear them! BTW, holiday tea at The Drake Hotel, and 5 tips for hosting a holiday gift exchange.