We are in the midst of the busiest time of the year. Work, family, friends, volunteering – they all want a lot of your time around the holidays. But in the middle of all this business, it’s important to make time for fun with your kiddos. And even that can get overwhelming. It’s been through trial and error and many cases of we-are-here-so-you-better-be-having-fun. But here are five things that are on our family’s “must do” list every year. It’s the things our kids remember and ask about year after year, so they have organically turned into our Christmas traditions. Some are obvious and some are a little outside of the box. Maybe something here will appeal to you as well.
- Pictures with Santa. This is pretty obvious, but a tradition I LOVE is framing our annual pictures and putting them all out every Christmas. It’s so fun to see how our kids have grown and also catch a small glimpse into their personalities, seeing how they interact with Santa. For an easy photo opportunity, check out the Half Price Books Santa.
- 12 Days of Christmas at Night. Every year our family goes to the 12 Days of Christmas display at the Arboretum. This is a perfect outing even for little ones. When my kids were very young, we just strolled through the gardens peacefully and marveled at the lights and music. As our kids get older, we play I Spy with the different exhibits and try to appreciate the art of all the costumes and decorations.
- Neighborhood Christmas Lights. One of the traditions our kids are most excited about is getting dinner at Keller’s, grabbing a hot chocolate and going “oohing” and “ahhing” at Christmas lights. Among our favorites are the 100 Santas on the 3700 block of Southwestern Boulevard in University Park and the synchronized lights and music at 5824 Marquita in the M-Streets. But the best part is just driving around and see who can spot amazing lights next or some good ol’ fashioned Texas diorama like the photo above.
- Vitruvian Lights in Addison. These lights are AH-MA-ZING. Besides the lights, our kids might spend the majority of their time rolling down the hills. They really are just the perfect height and angle for some barrel rolling, it’s hard to resist.
- Last but not least is our most unconventional Christmas tradition. We start the day off at the Heard Museum in McKinney for the life-sized dinosaur exhibit. What, dinosaurs don’t scream “Christmas” to you? Give it a shot! There is so much room to roam and run and explore nature at the Heard. Afterwards it’s a short drive over to Frisco for some outdoor ice skating.
We would love to hear from you! What are your must do Christmas traditions or events around town? Please share them in comments below.