Every family has its unique traditions, whether it’s a special Christmas Day dinner or a place you love to visit. This holiday season, try starting a new tradition. We’ve got eight easy ideas that any family can start, from crafts to cookies to hiking. Scroll down for a few simple ideas.

 

1. Host a Cookie Baking Party Online

While hosting a cookie exchange might not be possible this year, you can make a new baking tradition. Gather your ingredients and a handful of families or relatives and host a virtual cookie making party! You can choose a specific recipe or two, and share it around in advance. Make sure everyone is set up to start with ingredients and pre-heated oven at the start of the call, and get baking. As the host, you can lead the step-by-step but keep it light and casual. For little kids, one recipe is plenty. If you have older kids or you want to do a mom-night, take turns sharing tips and tricks as you dedicated a couple of hours to baking together. 

Looking for cookie inspiration? Check out our top 50+ recipes here. 

2. Make A Gift

If making gifts for everyone on your list could sounds like a daunting task, choose just one person to make a gift for. Here are 41 ideas for easy, DIY gifts that are actually useful. 

3. Take a New Year’s Day Hike

Don't spend all day indoors—take a hike together! It doesn't have to be on NYD either, you could make it a new Christmas Day tradition, an annual Solstice event or any day you'd like. 

4. Write a Gratitude List

photo: iStock

2020 has thrown a curve ball at families and there's no use pretending otherwise. But there's also that powerful lesson in resilience that comes from navigating a crisis. Get everyone together to write a list and post it somewhere visible of things each family member is grateful for this year. 

5. Host a Virtual Family Game Night with Your Bestie Fam

photo: iStock

We're not sure who misses those family dates, your kiddos or you. Since you likely won't be hosting a holiday soiree of any kind this year, go virtual. We think there are two key components:

1) Keep it small. Virtual hangouts with 20 different families is going to feel too much like that company wide conference you tried to attend. Choose or two other families. 

2) Figure out a plan in advance. There are certain games that lend themselves to virtual play better than others: we love playing drawing games or guessing games like twenty questions. We recently tried out the Anniversary Edition of 5 Second Rule which could easily be adapted to online play. You can also all try something like Houseparty, which does the game hosting for you. 

6. Volunteer with the Kids

photo: iStock

While your family may give back to the community all year round, take time during the holidays to install this as a tradition. And don't let the pandemic stop you. Here are 12 ways kids can help without even leaving the house. 

7. Make an Ornament

Do this every year and you'll have a tree's worth by the time they're grown. Here are 22 ideas that anyone can make. 

8. Learn About the Holiday Traditions of Others

We tend to get swept up in Santa or presents, but it's always important to respect and remember there are holiday traditions both around the world and in your own neighborhood that might be different than your own. Maybe you're just ditching the Elf on the Shelf and trying out the more inclusive (and less creepy) Reindeer in Here. Whether you're looking to incorporate social justice into this holiday season or trying to expand your child's horizons, learning about the holiday traditions of others is a perfect way to do that. Read a book, try a new recipe and ask your friends, family, colleagues and acquaintances what their holiday traditions are. Check out how winter holidays are celebrated around the world

—Amber Guetebier

 

featured image: Guille Alvarez via Unsplash 

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