Our Family Christmas Traditions

We are a very low key family around here.  And we do a pretty simple Christmas at our house — a few simple family traditions, enough baking to satisfy even my sweet tooth, visit with family, and a few presents under the tree.

I would like to share with you three special things about Christmas at our house that give me the warm and fuzzies.



Gingerbread is my favourite non chocolate desert. Nothing tastes like Christmas to me the way Gingerbread does!  Ever since by oldest was a toddler we have been baking and decorating gingerbread as a family, and have sometimes enjoyed having friends join us. I never thought of it until now, but that is what my mother did for us growing up – she baked piles of cookies and invited a table full of happy boys and girls over for a decorating party.

Baking gingerbread - an annual Christmas tradition!

Gingerbread - a Christmas tradition

Nativity Set

This is a relatively new family tradition for us — but it has much deeper roots. About 3 years ago I found this lovely set from my childhood in my parents’ basement after not having seen it in years! I asked my mom if I could have it and it has been one of my favourite parts of our family Christmases since. What makes this set so special to me is not only that it is 30 + years old, but it was hand painted by my own dear Gran <3 I just love that I can share this with my girls!

Gran's hand painted Nativity Set - an important Christmas tradition

Gran's hand painted Nativity Set - an important Christmas tradition

Advent Calendar

This tradition is not one that originated from my own childhood. I’m not sure that we ever had those cardboard, chocolate filled calendars or any other types in my home growing up. But when I found this lovely, wooden, Christmas tree advent calendar, I thought it was just perfect for us! Behind each door I tuck a little activity card (or sometimes a sweet treat!) so that each day we have some special Christmas activity to do together. Some of our activities have included skating, Christmas card making, watching Christmas movies, baking, and making Christmas themed crafts. Sometimes it’s a bit of a stretch coming up with 25 ideas! My children are just so excited each morning as they discover what special holiday activity we will be incorporating into our day.

Christmas Traditions - Advent Activity Calendar - a Christmas themed activity for each day!

Christmas Traditions - Advent Activity Calendar - a Christmas themed activity for each day!

I’d love to hear about your family traditions for the period leading up to Christmas! What do you and your children enjoy at this time of year?
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  1. Shecki @ Greatly Blessed

    December 10, 2015 at 10:20 am

    Your advent calendar is adorable! 🙂

    We do new jammies on Christmas Eve, and cinnamon rolls and OJ for Christmas breakfast every year.

    We also add a new animal to our Schleich nativity set every year and give the same animal to a family in need through World Vision. (This year, it’s ducks!)
    Shecki @ Greatly Blessed recently posted…Swindled In Paradise #giveawayMy Profile

    1. Learning Mama

      December 10, 2015 at 12:09 pm

      My daughter begs all year for cinnamon rolls – I usually make them for New Years Day.
      I love what you are doing with your nativity set! What a great idea 🙂

  2. Rebecca

    December 10, 2015 at 3:12 pm

    You know, I have never tasted a gingerbread cookie before? Crazy huh? I just thought about that. Sounds so strange. But I love the way you do your advent calendar. So cute and clever.
    Rebecca recently posted…12 Days of Blogmas: Day OneMy Profile

    1. Learning Mama

      December 10, 2015 at 3:49 pm

      You’ve never had gingerbread?! Noooooooo! We made about 7 dozen last year – wish I could give you some!

  3. Kylie

    December 16, 2015 at 3:51 pm

    Beautiful photo’s, love the look on your daughters face.

    Thank you for linking this to Christmas Fun. Week 3 is now up on the blog. 🙂

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