The Joy of Christmas Traditions Both of my sons can attest that each Christmas I have about three traditions I do with them. One tradition I started when they were little was letting them open their gifts from ONLY each other on Christmas Eve. I would usually take them shopping to buy for the other and inevitably, both would pick a toy for the other and most preferably one they would like to play with, too…ha! By letting them do their gift exchange on Christmas Eve, it gave them a taste of what was to come on Christmas day. It also helped to keep them entertained and encouraged them to get to bed early so Santa could come. My second tradition, and by far my personal favorite, is my “inability” to get that one gift they really wanted - the “I know you really wanted that this or that, but it’s sold out.” Of course, there are variations. For instance: I found it but they don’t have it in your size; I’d love to get you that, but it’s just too expensive; or It’s backordered and won’t arrive until after Christmas. Each year, I repeatedly tell one or the other, “In all seriousness, this year I really can’t get it,” but inevitably, they fall for it. And this is not a present I wrap and put under the tree. I hide it someplace. After we’ve opened all of our gifts, I wait for the right time and I ask one of them to do something for me that is very bland and unsuspecting. Something to the effect of, “Hey Ryan! Get me a roll of paper towels from the storage pantry.” And ta-da…he opens the door and there’s THAT ONE GIFT HE REALLY WANTED! This always brings huge laughter and has added fun to our Christmas. My favorite of the three traditions is my attempt to keep my sons little boys. Even though they are pretty much adults now, I still look for and buy a toy, book or something they loved from their childhood that will bring back a fun memory for them. I don’t know if they’ve picked up that this is a tradition of mine or if they think it’s just something fun I like to do, but I purposely get them both a gift that reminds ME of when they were little boys.