Christmas Eve, all of the relatives sprout from the woodwork and make their way to my mother's house. There, for several hours, we open all but a few gifts (a few for my two siblings, so they have something to open on Christmas) and quietly suffer one another's company until my mother reveals that the eggnog is done. Then, everyone drinks eggnog (recipe: one liter store bought eggnog, one bottle rum) and loudly tolerate one another's company.
Christmas Eve, normally when my dad gets off work, my family piles into the car. We stop to pick up coffee, hot chocolate, or whatever hot drink is preferred by each of us. Then, we go to this neighborhood that goes all out with decorations and lights; they even have their own radio station with GOOD Christmas music. We enjoy that display.
Then, before everyone goes to bed, we open one present each... it's always pajamas, but it's a running gag to act surprised.
The next morning, I am forced to sit through a reading of the Book of Luke, Chapter 2 from the Bible because my parents (read: mom) are religious. Then, we open presents.
A forty-five minute drive to my Great Aunt's house, where I am forced to deal with passive aggressive bullshit from the women on that side of the family, but at least I get food.
Then, a forty-five minute drive back to our neck of the woods, where we have dinner with my grandmother on my mom's side. I listen to Patsy Cline and Johnny Cash with her boyfriend, and we all drink wine and play cards. Then, we do presents with them.
We usually celebrate Christmas more than once because we have so much family that prefers to have small gatherings rather than one big one. It's better that way anyway; there is a ton of drama in my family's life. Therefore, we'll be having like 3 get togethers. 4 for me, if I'm counting a visit with my Dad.
I personally don't celebrate Christmas, I prefer to do gift exchanges on Winter Solstice because I am not Christian. But, now that I'm back home, my mom's making me do stuff on Christmas. >__>
Christmas Eve used to be the day we gather at my great grandma's. Not this year, unfortunately... This year, we'll be going to my grandmother's [her daughter's] for a laid back celebration. We exchange presents, eat ham, have a buffet of sweets and sing songs together. Typical family stuff, really.
Christmas morning is spent at my mother's house. We wake up to just hang out together by the tree and watch holiday films while we have coffee, lots of breakfast and open gifts. Nothing fancy at all. It's just us enjoying our time together.
That's all, really. We do nothing too special aside from spend time together. We used to drive around neighbourhoods to look at lights every year, but I'm not sure we do that anymore. Some traditions just lose their excitement as time passes.
Adventure stories! They can be fantasy, modern, sci-fi, all kinds! Give me some good world travel stories and I'm all over it! I also enjoy romance stories and even though I tend to play females I love playing gay men.
When I was a teenager, my friends & I used to hang out almost all night, go out at midnight to see Christmas lights, and just hang out and have fun. Then we'd go home, catch a couple hours sleep and get up to go to church Christmas morning. Now that I've moved out on my own and my parents are usually away for Christmas (they're both retired now), I usually go invite myself over to a relative or friend's house for Christmas dinner and go ride around visiting folks. But my parents just came back from a trip, so I think they'll actually be home this year, so we might actually have a family dinner again this year. So other than Christmas morning church service, I don't have much else set as far as tradition goes.
When I was growing up I always missed out on Christmas, cause my parents were Jehovah's witnesses. D: When they weren't seriously practicing, we'd end up missing Christmas anyway cause the family fight would always happen right after thanksgiving. XD
So I used to go with my friend and visit HER family for Christmas, which was always pretty cool. XD I loved how they always had delicious Divinity (a candy treat!) and how much fun it was playing santa and handing out the gifts on Christmas morning. Everyone opened their gifts one at a time so we could savor the awesomeness!
Before Christmas was taken from us, we'd give Santa some pizza and coke, because he was prolly tired of always eating cookies and milk. XD
Since moving away and having a place of our own, we've not quite settled in to many official traditions yet. I always buy a new set of Christmas balls for my tree. And two "fancy" ornaments.
I like to set my tree up the day after Thanksgiving so I can have a month of enjoying the lights!
I'm gonna start making sugar plums and divinity!
We do a secret santa with the family. XD
A small and tasty christmas dinner.
And... well... We're still building our traditions. :3