Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Cheap-o Christmas Eve

Ok, this post has nothing to do with painting, personalizing, or junky furniture. I promise to get back to the norm after this. But, since I have found I sort of enjoy writing these posts, I'm going to indulge myself.

Kelly's Korner, one of the few blogs I read, asked others to share a favorite Christmas tradition. True to form, my family has a weird one. We used to have a big meal on Christmas Eve, and Christmas day. Over the years, with the deaths of grandparents/parents, the number of adults gathering has shrunk, while the kid population seemed to explode. We had to adjust. Now, Christmas day is full of food and presents, and Christmas Eve is a little less traditional.

We eat pizza.

And we don't even make it. Pizza Hut does.

My parent's call when everyone else has arrived, and we pick up the pizza on our way to their house. The kids couldn't be happier. They even get a special treat of root beer in a bottle. The clean up is simple and quick. That way we can move on to the next event.

$1.00 gifts.

My sister and I each take our children to the dollar store, and let them pick out a gift for each of the 7 adults. Since we know the price will be $1, they get the pick of the store. It is so much fun to watch them shop. They really try to find something personal for each person. They even get to wrap their own presents - no matter how badly.
The real fun is when the adults open the gifts. The kids are beaming with pride. They get to feel the joy of giving, and we get a few good laughs. Like the time my Jackson, 4 at the time, thought my elderly grandmother just couldn't live without those fire engine red panties, with black lace trim. Or, when my brother-in-law received a lovely cowboy figurine, and managed to look grateful without laughing. While some of the presents have been odd, some have been pretty handy. What grandad or uncle couldn't use a roll of masking tape, or a pack of gum? What aunt can resist a candle in the shape of a cherry pie? My sweet nephew even bought me a glass to rinse my paintbrushes in. I use it all the time.
We occasionally throw in a game of dirty santa, but no matter what, we have tons of fun, and no stress. We save that for Christmas day.


  1. What a great idea with the $1 gifts!

  2. Lovely traditions.. My family has also done simple dinners to avoid the stress of the holiday cookings...
    And I love the $1 gifts idea! :)

  3. LOVE the $1 gift idea and the pizza! Can't go wrong with Pizza Hut!

  4. What a special tradition! I am assuming the grandmother who got the fire engine red panties was Aunt Tutu? Hilarious!! I am trying to start a tradition this year of having all the kids to our house on Christmas Eve to decorate cookies for Santa and each child gets to take their cookies home to leave out. We'll see how that works out!