The holidays are such an amazing time of year! Yes- they are also a lot of work too (especially for moms!) Most parents focus on the kids and traditions for the family. Holiday traditions with your partner can sometimes fall by the wayside. I know in my family and many families we know, both (or one) parent work so much leading up to the holidays to help with finances. We deserve some fun too!
Plus with the holidays just around the corner, there is always so much to do. If you have children- they are usually the main focus of the season. Making memories with your kids is so important. There are so many fun things to do with your kids, like these 16 ideas! But making memories and sharing traditions with your partner is pretty important too.
It is easy to forget your partner during times like these. So much shopping, wrapping, cleaning and cooking to do! Who has time to plan elaborate date nights or money to spend on expensive gifts? The reality for most families during the busy holiday season is that the kids comes first. But that doesn’t mean you and your partner can’t enjoy some fun traditions together.
Here are a few Holiday traditions to try with your partner. They are mostly low key (and low budget) activities that you can do without getting a babysitter or taking out a loan!
- Movie Night. When the kids are in bed and you get a little quiet time. Watch a favorite Holiday movie together like The Holiday, Four Christmases, or It’s a Wonderful Life. You can always have a special treat together like this delicious spiked eggnog or even chips and dip with this slow cooker cheddar bacon dip that you can whip together earlier in the day.
- Wrap Together. It might sound kinda dumb – but my partner and I always do this each year for the kids. He usually had no freaking clue what I buy the kids for Christmas, so this is the time we take to talk about what they wanted and what they actually got. While it’s not the most romantic, it is a time to catch up and get on the same page. It is nice to spend some quiet time together before the craziness of Christmas Day. To make it a little more romantic- you can always have a movie playing and a nice wine poured.
- Christmas Eve Exchange. Set a reasonable limit and buy one gift for each other that you exchange on Christmas Eve. You can always have a theme to the gift. Another fun idea is a homemade gift or a really low budget gift (like $5) to see who can get the most creative thing for each other. A homemade naughty or nice coupon book can be extra fun for couples too.
- Shop Together. Chances are you still have some shopping to do. I watch my nieces and nephews and have my brother and sister in law finish their Christmas Shopping together. You can catch the scenic route and see some Christmas lights along the way. Go have dinner while you are out as well. Even if that means grabbing fast food and eating in the car while you listen to Christmas music together. Parents have to do what parents have to do!
- Gingerbread House Contest. This one is super fun if you both are competitive. Have your kids be the judge and get 2 Gingerbread house kits or make them from scratch if you are brave. Whoever makes the best house is the King/Queen of Christmas and has to pickup all the wrapping paper on Christmas morning.
- Game Night. Once the kids are in bed or at school if that is what your schedule allows. Play a game together! It sounds cheesy but its kind of cool to do something that is just plain old- fashioned fun. Buy a fun game and wrap it up. Or you can each buy a game and unwrap each others. It is nice to take a little time away to just do something together!
- Stocking Stuffers. Christmas morning is crazy- So crazy in my house. We always get each other only gifts for our stockings. Mainly because we can’t afford expensive gifts for each other and its just easier for us. While the kids are opening their gifts, we usually take a little time to open our stockings that we got for each other. It’s a nice little way to connect with each other from across the room as the living room is bombarded with toys and wrapping paper. Fill it with small stuff your partner needs and a few nice things they don’t expect as well. It doesn’t have to be expensive!
- Have some hot cocoa outside. Even if you live in a super cold place. Take a little time on Christmas Eve to make some hot cocoa and get outside. There is something magical about Christmas Eve outside, it really brings back the magic of childhood. The night is usually cold and clear with stars in the sky. Wrap yourself in blankets and get cozy under the stars, even if your kids are looking out their window for Santa!
- Christmas Eve Dinner. Usually the kids take forever to go to sleep! Forever! We try to feed the kids early and get them to bed kind of early (Hahaha- yeah right). Make something yummy or better yet order out. We always order Chinese food and put some away for us later on. You know full well you have a long night ahead of you- you will need the energy! It helps to sit and have a nice little candlelit dinner together before you end up wrapping and putting gifts under the tree for hours!
- Dance by the Christmas Tree. Once the gifts are under the tree and (hopefully) kids are asleep. Create a Holiday Music playlist and have a nice dance with all the lights off but the holidays lights. It is a nice way to connect and end the night, especially after you’ve probably been yelling at kids to get back in bed for three hours.
At the end of the day, traditions don’t have to be expensive or elaborate. Just spending time together and making memories is what it is all about. While it may be a little more challenging when you have kids- you find ways to make it work. And hopefully those traditions will last a lifetime.