Christmas Shopping. School Plays. Work Parties. Traveling. It’s the most wonderful time of the year, right?
With all of the things on your to-do list, it can seem hard to slow down and enjoy this magical time of year. Over the years, I’ve looked to family traditions to help me plan our holidays and focus on what’s really important this time of year. Here are some of my favorites.
Random Acts of Kindness
Two years ago, on November 19th, we were on the receiving end of a Random Act of Kindness when a stranger gave my daughter a stuffed animal at Lindale Mall. That gesture meant so much to us that my husband and I decided to make it a tradition to spend November 19th each year doing Random Acts of Kindness. It’s a tradition that will help me stay focused on what’s really important this time of year. Here is a list of things we are considering doing:
- Paying for a stranger’s coffee
- Baking cookies for a neighbor
- Visit those living in a senior living facility
- Prepare a meal for the Ronald McDonald Room at St. Luke’s Hospital
Viewing Holiday Lights
Ever since I was a little girl, my family and I would visit Kersten’s light display in the north of Vinton. We would meet family friends and go out for pizza before heading out to see the lights. As an adult, I still get excited when my husband and I pick a date to do this with our daughter.
Here are a list of area light displays you and your family could check out:
- Blue Creek Light Show (4942 Blue Creek Ct, Walker, IA)
- Kersten’s (5598 22nd Ave. Trail, Vinton, IA)
- Gordon Avenue Light Show (5401 Gordon Ave NW Cedar Rapids, IA)
- Private Residence (9908 Hall Rd in Cedar Rapids, IA)
- Check out The Gazette’s Holiday Light Finder for more light displays near you!
I love to bake, but get so stressed out during the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. A few years ago, a group of girlfriends and I decided to get together and make cookie dough ahead of the holidays. We agreed on a time and place and everyone chose a recipe we wanted to make. One friend would do the shopping and we’d all show up ready to whip up some treats. At the end of the day, we’d each have a variety of frozen cookie dough, perfect to pull out for a last-minute party. This is a tradition I look forward to because I get to spend a little time with my friends while preparing for all the holiday season. Here are great cookie recipes to try!
What are some of your favorite ways to celebrate the holidays? Any things you and your family make into traditions?
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