Donoho reflects on holiday family traditions


Bailey Donoho, Staff

During the holidays, everybody can be so stressed and overworked trying to get those last minute chores done in time. My family, I know, always has to decorates for Christmas the night after Thanksgiving, or else it will just never get done. Many other traditions and memories come with the holiday season to make it one of the busiest times of the year.

Every family has a tradition of some sort. Whether that be opening one present on Christmas Eve, the way one decorates their tree, what breakfast one’s family eats, or fun games. Having the ability to make traditions with your family is an amazing experience. Traditions are important to my family and I have a different tradition that I partake in for each Christmas that I get to attend.

On Christmas Eve, we have Christmas with my dad’s parents. We all go down to my aunt’s house and we eat dinner and open presents there. We go in order of youngest to oldest and then after everyone has opened their presents, the cousins do a gift card exchange game. We all sit in a circle and my mom reads a story and every time it says left, we pass to the left. Every time it says right, we pass to the right.

Christmas morning, my family wakes up early and opens our presents. After that is done, we go to my great grandparents house in our pajamas for a big breakfast. We have biscuits and gravy, sausage, and monkey bread. After everyone has eaten breakfast we go to the living room and open presents. The little ones go first, then me and my brother, then the adults.

After that, we go out to my grandpa’s house for lunch. As soon as each family arrives, we sit down and get our photo taken. After lunch, we open our presents. My grandma always has a weird way of how we open our gifts. One year she made us draw numbers out of a hat to determine the order in which we went. Another year, she had us do scratch off tickets and the person that won the most money got to go first. After we open presents, the family then plays a game. We play spoons, a card game, and it can get intense because my family is competitive. After the games, everyone goes home to take a nap.

Then we have the Wheeler Christmas. Let me preface this by saying that the Wheeler’s are a big group of people. So when we all get together, it is always a lot of fun. The tradition that the Wheeler’s have is a White Elephant gift exchange. There have been things in the White Elephant game since before I was born, and every year when someone opens one of those gifts, everyone laughs and gets really excited that it wasn’t them that got it.

Traditions in my family are very important to me. I truly don’t feel like I have had Christmas until I have done them all. I love Christmas time and really enjoy being around family that I don’t get to see all the time.