Christmas Traditions

Chicago Christmas TraditionsThere’s something about Christmas that brings out the warm and fuzzy feelings for me. It has nothing to do with gifts or shopping and everything to do with family and traditions.

Since I was little – my whole family would load into my dad’s truck on the search for the “perfect” Christmas tree. We would drive from location to location until we found the one that was destined to come home with us. My dad would hold up a tree for all of us to admire, spinning it in circles so we could see if the tree had any bald spots, and then we would all say whether or not it was the perfect one. Once home, me and my mom would string the tree with lights and then me and my brother would sort through all the ornaments. Each year, we would get a new ornament as a gift from my Nana. Its awesome now because I have dozens of special ornaments that decorate my own tree.

Besides tree hunting, Christmas movies were always a big deal in my house, especially “A Christmas Story”. We would all curl up next to a fire with egg nog in hand laughing at Ralph’s mishaps. My hubby actually told me this week he has NEVER seen “A Christmas Story”… that’s like an american crime!!

Christmas Eve would bring on the rush of last minute shopping – usually for my dad. Every year my dad would wait until the day before Christmas to head to the mall to shop for my mom and I was always his assistant shopper elf. I think he planned it that way so we could spend some daddy daughter time together. We also have a huge family Christmas Eve party every year with all my aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandma.

Come Christmas day – we were always awoken by the smell of my Nana’s signature breakfast casserole and homemade kolaczki. To this day all of these traditions continue. I am so grateful that these moments have turned into amazing memories. I hope you all have a Merry Christmas. Feel free to share some of your traditions in the comments below!

Heather Stammen
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