Your first holiday season as husband and wife is an opportunity to start your own traditions and get closer to one another. Here are six ways to create meaningful holiday traditions that will satisfy both of you:
1. Make a List and Check It TwiceEach of you should make a list of the traditions that your family of origin maintains. Then, decide which of those traditions is most important to you. Discuss your lists and decide which of the traditions on each list can be combined into your new married life. For example, if you make Christmas cookies every Christmas Eve and your spouse goes to Midnight Mass, you can decide to make cookies together in the afternoon and then head to Mass.
2. Find the Fountain of YouthAct like kids again. The holiday season often makes you feel childlike. Think back to holiday seasons past and the fun and games that put a smile on your face. Spin the dreidel. Sit on Santa's lap together and get a photo. Make angels in the snow. And let go of the adult responsibilities that come with marriage for just a little bit.
3. Send Holiday Greetings Make holiday cards and share your joyous new life with family and friends. Some people send cards with family photos on them. If you settle on that idea, you could send one featuring a wedding photo or one of the two of you in your new home. Others write an annual newsletter updating family and friends on their lives, which would give you the opportunity to fill them in on what's been happening since the wedding. You could also make cards on your computer with a graphics program or out of origami, which would mean your cards could also serve as ornaments for a tree or garland. Friends and family will start to look forward to receiving your homemade cards annually.
4. Make Gifts for One AnotherNewlyweds are usually saving money after spending lots on a wedding and a new home or apartment. Instead of doling out lots of money on holiday gifts for one another, consider making something special. Creating a CD with your favorite songs for your spouse or making a calendar with personal photos are clever ideas.
5. Feed Each OtherDevelop a holiday menu that suits both your tastes. If a roasted turkey means Christmas to you, but your spouse is Jewish and expects potato latkes to make an appearance during the holiday season, prepare both. The idea is to meld your preferences to create one new tradition. In your home, a table full of turkey, latkes, and whatever else your belly desires can become the sign of the holidays.
6. Throw a PartyHang the mistletoe, light the menorah, deck the halls, and invite all your friends and family to the new home you're creating with your beloved. Feed them, sing with them, and bask in the glow of your first holiday season as husband and wife. Besides, a party is a great excuse to practice entertaining and use all those serving pieces and dishes you received as wedding gifts.