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As Christmas and the New Year approaches, I have been thinking about my childhood and how we celebrated the holidays. As my daughter Bailey and I were putting up the Christmas tree, I started to reminisce about our holiday traditions when I was a kid. For example, we generally didn't put up the Christmas tree until Christmas Eve, but then left it up through New Year's Day.

Through the years as I moved away, got married, and had children of my own, we've tried to incorporate some of our old family traditions into our celebrations as well as start traditions of our own that can be continued through the next generations, like our children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and so on. Here are a few of the recipes handed down through the years that my husband and I and the kids continue to use at the holidays.

Karen's Favorite Christmas Recipes

I asked some of my coworkers what traditions they continue to incorporate into their holiday celebration and it was interesting.  For example, Jenna doesn't celebrate Christmas, she's Jewish. They do enjoy gathering and eating Chinese food, referred to by some as International Chinese Food Appreciation day "L'Chaim." Maddy celebrates with her family (and family only). They go to Great Falls and rent a room at the Great Northern Inn and have baked ravioli with Borries spaghetti sauce and her dad proudly sports his unicorn sweatshirt.  Mya's friends have a prayer before dinner and then have a rousing session of storytelling on each other (brutal), and Lacey and her family share an embarrassing time and videotape it (nothing like having that live on tape forever). They also share something uplifting and positive for the future.

It's fun to hear the way other people celebrate with their loved ones. What are some of your family traditions that have been passed down from generation to generation?


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