Celebrating our Traditions this Christmas

Christmas starts the moment I pull out the box in our basement marked Christmas Tree. It’s an old tree that goes together branch by branch. I bought it for $4 at a garage sale when I owned my first house and it is seven feet tall. It takes an hour to get up, but I don’t mind.


One of the ornaments that has been passed down to me. It doesn’t look like much to the average person, but it holds so many beautiful holiday memories for me. She always finds the perfect spot on my tree.

I put on holiday music, get a cup of eggnog, some snacks and mandarin oranges, then I get started. It’s peaceful and nostalgic: the music reminds me of holidays gone by, and the smell of mandarin oranges takes me right back to my own childhood. Scent is such a powerful trigger of memories, and for me, there’s nothing like the smell of mandarin oranges to make me say, “it smells like Christmas.” That’s why I was excited to hear about Pine-Sol’s new mandarin orange scent; and I put it on my holiday shopping list. Imagine the whole house smelling like mandarin oranges – what a great way to set the holiday mood. 

Last year I thought about picking up a new, easier to assemble tree and that is when it occurred to me that I like that hour. That hour when I am putting up each branch has become one of my own traditions. I look forward to that hour. Holiday music, eggnog, snacks, me and a tree.


As far back as I can remember, we’ve always decorated our family tree together. So many fun memories and I still have many of those decorations.

Christmas is filled with many traditions. Some are our own, and are not shared with anyone else. Others are shared with family, friends, children, and neighbours. Traditions are things we do, things we eat, scents, sights, music and more.


My sister, mom, and dad decorating the tree in Shilo, MB.

Back to my first tradition of the season. Once the tree is up, then the Ornament box is pulled out. This is a family favourite because it is filled with old and new treasures that we haven’t seen in a year. I have ornaments that are over 30 years old from Russia. I lived there as a child for a few years with my parents and they brought them back. I have those gold-wire ornaments that have been handed down from my parents. They collected them for awhile in the 90’s.


My grandmother made this for me when I was younger. She made one for me and one for my sister. She is no longer with us, but her memories are and I hold her close every Christmas.

Then come all of the memories of decorating the tree with my family growing up. With each ornament I pull out, I remember past holidays. Our girls join in and help out because they love hearing the stories behind each little treasure that is pulled out of the box.


Decorating the tree in my first house with my sister, friend and family. This would be about Christmas 2001.

It is a great start to our season and it sets the tone around the rest of our house.

I recently asked you, our community what holiday traditions you like the most and I received over 50 responses. I have to say that I loved hearing about the traditions that are most important to you and I’m sharing some of them here.

“Baking Christmas cookies with my daughter, and this year, my little granddaughter will join us, too!” – Piroska B

“No matter how old we all still put stockings out on Christmas eve including one for each animal in our family.  Our dog actually knows which stocking is his and he puts his out all by himself.” – Pamela M

“I love our Christmas Eve get together – we have appies and drinks with immediate family and let the kids open one gift (usually pajamas and a book, movie or game – something to keep them busy while the adults visit).” – Jennifer P

“My dad handing out the Christmas gifts on Christmas Morning.” – Angela M

 “After dinner, we play board games together :)” – Suzie B

“Making the eggnog.” – Patrick S

“A tradition on my dad’s side of the family is to divide everyone into 12 groups and sing the 12 Days of Christmas.  We’ve done this for years and it has become a tradition.” – Amy M

“Bringing my boys to visit Santa!” – Cheryl M

“Baking all the treats together as a family along with meat pies.  Love that tradition and have very fond memories.” – Tanya B

“For my kids, it’s opening their Lego Avent calendars every morning. For me, it’s having eggnog by the tree Christmas Eve when their in bed and everything is set up.” – Melanie B

“Going to a carol service on Christmas Eve, and coming home to a house full of family, food and noise.” – Nicole G

“Listening to Bing Crosby Xmas records.” – Mary G

Thank you for sharing all of these with us whether I was able to include them here or not. I loved reading through your submissions and I bet you can’t wait to experience those traditions again this year.


And because I think I was the cutest baby ever, here’s one last Christmas photo with my mom.

This post on Holiday Traditions is sponsored by Pine-Sol. With a strong heritage and long legacy, Pine-Sol is a long-standing tradition in many Canadian homes. Apart from the classic pine scent, Pine-Sol is also available in variety of long-lasting scents – mandarin sunrise, lavender, lemon and sparkling wave.  You can use different scents throughout your home to change the mood.


Sheri Landry

Sheri publishes, and writes at This Bird’s Day where she shares all of the thoughts in her head without the voices. Sticking mainly with content for Canadians, Sheri shares family stories, product information and anything that fits into her (and her family’s) daily activities.

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10 comments… add one
  • Jennifer P. Dec 1, 2015, 1:37 pm

    It was lovely to read about your traditions!

  • Soozle Dec 1, 2015, 8:11 am

    We have some ornaments in our home as well that belonged to my grand parents – they aren’t much, but they mean a lot to us as well!

  • nicolthepickle Nov 30, 2015, 4:18 am

    We always had mandarin oranges for breakfast on Christmas morning. I love the idea of the new Pine sol scent.

  • joanne darrell Nov 27, 2015, 10:57 am

    We open one gift on Christmas Eve.Love your Christmas photos.

  • Debbie Bashford Nov 27, 2015, 4:26 am

    I think most of ours are in putting up the tree as well as we have ornaments from 5 generations now

  • Merry120 Nov 18, 2015, 10:05 pm

    I love seeing your old photographs. They look very similar to our Christmases. Ornaments full of memories are my favorites on our tree.

  • Mom Nov 12, 2015, 6:22 pm

    Love your post, Christmas was always a favorite time too, especially with you and Nancy, and now to be able to celebrate with our three granddaughters makes it even more special…and also with our two great son-in-laws makes it complete.

    • Sheri Landry Sheri Landry Nov 12, 2015, 11:16 pm

      Ack mom. You got me in the feels! We love our holidays with you and dad too. Love you, S

  • Nancy @ Whispered Inspirations Nov 12, 2015, 8:39 am

    Christmas is my favorite season. Simply because of all the memories and nostalgia, just a happy time. I love all of your pics! :)

    • Sheri Landry Sheri Landry Nov 12, 2015, 9:34 am

      Thanks Nancy. Old ornaments that have been handed down are so beautiful to photograph. Or maybe it is the memories behind them that I see :)

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