Traditions are cherished events for millions upon millions of people all over the world. However, while you may have a specific movie you watch on your birthday or a certain place you go for your wedding anniversary, holiday traditions generally hold an even more special spot in our hearts.

Sure, surprise holiday plans can be exciting and fun, but traditions can be passed down generation after generation. But of course, they really have to be memorable and at least a little fun in order to have a chance at becoming actual traditions.

If you try to make everyone “spring” clean the house every year before decorating for the holidays, the kids aren’t likely to enjoy it and chances are slim to none that they’ll pass down the practice to their own kids. So, with that in mind, we thought we’d share a few fun holiday traditions that you may want to consider implementing.

1. Sweaters & Photos & Fun, Oh My!

You may break out your ugly Christmas sweaters to wear around work and to the yearly holiday office party, but there’s a bit more fun you can have with them as well. Stay away from matching ones and get the entire family their own ugly sweaters. Then take several fun photos that can be used for custom ornaments, Christmas cards, scrapbooks, and more to help capture the moment forever.

Don’t stick to traditional poses either. Let the kids make funny faces, have the dogs join or photobomb the shoot, have a snowball fight. In other words, get creative and, most of all, have fun.

2. Let the Kids Open a Present Early

They’ve been shaking the gift boxes and trying to guess the contents for weeks, and though they’re still likely going to wake you up at the crack of dawn the following morning, let them open one present on Christmas Eve. However, you’ll probably want to limit them to certain ones so they’ll have the surprise of their “main” presents the morning of the big day.

3. Spread a Little Joy to Others

Whether you’re vacationing in Bermuda or celebrating at home, you should definitely use the season to reach out to friends and relatives that you haven’t spoken to in a while. Call them up and have the family sing some holiday songs or take turns wishing them a Merry Christmas.

Another great tradition you can start is purchasing gifts for the less fortunate. Sign up for one of the angel trees in your area and sponsor a family. Explain to the kids why you’re doing this and let them pick out presents for kids their age.

An oldie but a goodie is to go caroling in the neighborhood. Order a Christmas songbook and have the kids help pick out which ones you’ll belt out. You might want to practice a few times beforehand, but the main thing is having fun and spreading a little holiday cheer.

4. Get Your Own Christmas Tree

Even if you don’t have any children, getting your Christmas tree from a farm where you cut down your choice can be a fun and romantic activity.

However, kids are certain to enjoy picking out the best one and helping get it home. The sense of pride they’ll feel when they tell everyone where it came from is something they’re almost certain to want to share with their own children in the future.

It really doesn’t matter what you choose to make a tradition as long as you do it as a family and it’s something that everyone enjoys. Before definitively deciding which new ones you’ll implement, ask everyone which one(s) sound better to them and which don’t sound fun at all. That way no one feels left out or gets stuck doing something they absolutely hate.

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