25 Simple Christmas Traditions to Embrace This Christmas

by Mel

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Creating family memories this Christmas season doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are 25 simple Christmas traditions to embrace for a simpler season. 



Christmas time can be so exhausting! However, you don’t need expensive or complicated Christmas traditions to create a meaningful and memorable season. 

A few years ago, we decided to simplify our Christmas in lots of ways. We simplify our Christmas season by

All of these principles in more are taught in this “Simplify Your Christmas” online, self-paced workshop.

Don’t get me wrong. We are far from perfect and some years are more simple than others. It’s easy to get caught up in the fun Christmas activities that only happen during December. Why can’t we have 60 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas?

But we’ve learned that when we slow down and take the time to enjoy the calmer, simpler moments the season brings, we are ALL happier. And isn’t that what Christmas is about?


Last Christmas, I learned this lesson again. On December 23, my husband and my Alma Mater was playing a basketball game. Go Cougars! He really wanted to take our entire family to the game and invites cousins to go along, too.

Immediately, I was like, “Yeah right! We aren’t spending the night before Christmas Eve at a BYU basketball game. That is so NOT FESTIVE! And we still have so many Christmas festivities to do.”

Well after I let myself cool down a bit, I realized that Christmas is not about WHAT we do per se, but the memories we are creating. So I gave in (with only a slight grudge) and we spent the night at the basketball game.

And you know what? The entire night was actually really fun! Everyone was happy. (How could our children not be happy with all cheering on our team and eating giant cougar tail donuts?)

We listened to Christmas music for an hour in the car, had a really great chat together, and got to make some fun memories with our extended family.


So why do I tell you this? I learned that YES! Christmas activities are fun and meaningful, but let’s not forget the WHY behind what we are doing. If everyone is unhappy doing a really fun, festive Christmas outing, is it that important?

Of course, this will look different for every person and every family. And it may take some time to figure out how to find a good balance.


  • Before December starts, sit down with everyone in your family and prioritize the most important activities and events for everyone.
  • Let everyone choose one or more must-do Christmas activities/traditions.
  • Mark them on your calendar.

For more planning tips, join the online “Simplify Your Christmas” workshop here. 


With that disclaimer out of the way, here’s 25 SIMPLE Christmas Traditions to embrace this season:

1. Decorate the Christmas tree together.
2. Watch the Christmas Devotional from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.
3. Read Christmas stories under the Christmas tree.
4. Have an indoor picnic by the Christmas tree.
5. Drive to see Christmas lights in pajamas.
6. Drink hot cocoa on the front porch.
7. Cuddle up to a Christmas movie.
8. Sleep out by the Christmas tree on December 23.
9. Celebrate Advent nights.
10. Have a candlelight dinner.
11. Dance to Christmas music.
12. Deliver the 12 Days of Christmas to someone.
13. Be disconnected to enjoy time with those you love.
14. Build a snowman.
15. Go caroling.
16. Visit someone in a hospital or rest home.
17. Hand out candy canes to visitors. 
18. Go ice skating.
19. Go sledding.
20. Try out a new Christmas recipe.
21. Celebrate Advent Nights. 
22. Do a Sub-4-Santa.
23. Stay home.
24. Go to a movie together on Christmas Eve.
25. Do 25 Days to Closer to Christ– A Scripture Advent

And let’s not forget the bonus:

Go to a basketball game. Kidding, okay, maybe, not really. 😉

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