Many holiday traditions date back hundreds of years ago, and we still celebrate them today as a way of honoring our roots. However, with the changing of technology and modern beliefs, some people have found that even traditions deserve an upgrade.
Here are our 5 ideas on how to modernize your holiday traditions this year!
1. Cozy Get Togethers: While some people love a good reason to dress up, a good majority of adults would rather be comfortable for a casual get together. Some fun themed ideas used in recent years are matching pajamas or animal onesies (plus, you can go right to bed afterwards)! Ugly Sweater parties have also seen a spike in popularity in the last five years. Sweaters can either be store bought or a contest can be held to see who can make the ugliest holiday sweater by hand.
If you do want something a little more formal, consider hosting a Winter Solstice party (winter solstice is December 21st). Ideas include drinking hot chocolate by the fireplace with storytelling, baking and decorating cookies, setting up an eggnog station, making snow forts or snow people outside if the weather allows, and any other winter themed ideas you can come up with.
2. Gifting Games: Who doesn’t love gift giving so why not spice it up a bit? The game of gift hunting can vary based on space, but the idea is to for everyone to hide presents around the designated area and then encourage loved ones to search for their present. This holiday version of an Easter egg hunt can be incorporated into the White Elephant game where the first gift you find is yours. More into mysteries? Leave clues for your designated person, similar to a treasure hunt!
3. Vegan and Gluten-Free Recipes: Think how uncomfortable it is to be sitting at the table with all your friends and family if you’re unable to eat any of the food. Make your get-together potluck style, and everyone can bring something that fits their diet and palette. Besides, what better way is there to showcase diversity than through various food offerings?
Today’s dining trends will provide you with different options as well. If you are feeling devious, try some of these simple vegan and gluten-free dishes and don’t tell anyone! Many vegan recipes are so delectable that you can’t even tell they’re not the real thing, such as Vegan Risotto Alla Milanese With Peas or Fettuccine With Wild Mushrooms & Artichoke Hearts. Try some appetizing gluten-free recipes like Cheesy Cauli Bread, Brown Butter Carrots, or Green Beans with Cranberries, Goat Cheese, and Bacon. Trust us when we say, a lot of these recipes are delicious and not as complicated as you think.
4. Volunteer: While it’s always nice to receive presents, it’s even nicer to give, especially to those who need it most. Starting a tradition to volunteer during the holidays is one of the best ways to grow closer as a group, a community, and as a family. Helping the underprivileged can build perspective that there are so many things you have to be grateful for. There are so many options on how to make a difference this year! Volunteer at your local soup kitchen, go out together to the toy store and pick out gifts for a charity such as Toys for Tots, adopt a family from Salvation Army Angel Tree Program, or spend your time at your Boys and Girl Club. Have any animal lovers in your group? Volunteer at your local shelter!
5. Get Creative for the New Year: As you’re ringing in 2019, try something different. Host a sleepover, and make it an annual tradition that your friends and family will look forward to. Other suggestions include having a bake-off or chili cook-off contest, going bowling, making a time capsule, or turning the evening into a spa night.
There’s no need to go with the norm this holiday season. With some creativity and inspiration, it can be easy to start your very own traditions for every celebration, or mix it up and try something different every year. The possibilities are endless.