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The Top 5 American Christmas Traditions

Cristale Adams is an online author and publisher. Her articles vary in topics and focus on real life. She always enjoys learning new things.

The Truth About Christmas

Christmas is the world's first largely observed holiday. This holiday is also the first commercially celebrated, even before Halloween and Valentine's Day. This is the day that we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This is the nativity scene story that is most usually displayed, where Mary gave birth in a barn because the inn had no vacancies. Although the date of this event is unknown, it is celebrated on December 25th each and every year. The first known celebration of Christmas took place on December 25th in 336 A.D. in Rome. Australia is one of the first countries in the modern world to initiate a Christmas Day celebration.

As of 2021, Santa Clause is now 1,750 years old, although he hasn't kept count past 550 years old. Saint Nicholas, generous with children and newly married couples during Christmas time, originated during 280 A.D. near modern-day Turkey. He was honored annually with a feast. He was a bishop in the catholic church. Gift giving is a pagan tradition as offerings to the gods and is also a Christian tradition to represent the gifts that were given upon the birth of Jesus. Many traditional Christmas songs represent this fact as well.

*Fun Fact: Jingle bells was the first song played in space!

Merry Christmas

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What is a Tradition?

A tradition is formally defined as 'the transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation or the fact of being passed on in this way, according to the Oxford dictionary. Modernly, new traditions and customs are continuously being invented and created within families and communities. These traditions are performed annually and religiously, without fail. Some examples of traditions are:

  • Wedding Traditions
  • Baby Shower Traditions
  • 4th of July Traditions
  • Easter Traditions

Christmas traditions can be from eating certain foods on Christmas Day only to doing certain things, or even going to certain places or attending certain events. Christmas traditions have been passed down through our ancestors and throughout the generations. New traditions are also being created to change with the times and include modern technology. Traditions can be sentimental and special, sometimes even just routine.

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Christmas Traditions

The Top 5 Best American Christmas Traditions

There are many Christmas traditions that many different religions and cultures perform. Many new traditions are also being created annually. There are some traditions that have remained since the beginning of this holiday celebration. Our grandparents have done it, our parents have done it, now we find ourselves doing it, but maybe making a few changes to accommodate the modern era. Some traditions will never die no matter what because they are instilled in our roots and our heritage.

And now for the top 5 best American Christmas traditions....

1. Decorate Inside and Out

For many people, they go all out to decorate inside and out for Christmas only. Lawns, rooftops, trees, and bushes can be covered with light and decor. Thousands of dollars can easily be spent just to completely decorate the front yard and the rooftop, plus all of the time and effort that is invested. Sometimes there are neighborhood competitions and contests that will judge the brightest and best-decorated home. This is a way of showing Christmas spirit and cheer.

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2. Trim the Tree

Christmas trees originally began with the ancient Egyptians and Romans decorating evergreen trees. The first Christmas tree brought to America was a German candlelit tree. Evergreen trees are believed to have special powers to keep witches and evil spirits away.

The tree represents the world. The lights represent the stars with the largest star at the top representing the North star. The presents underneath represent the presents that were brought to baby Jesus at the time right after his birth. The ornaments represent the different countries and towns of the world. Garland or tinsel represents the snow all over the world during this winter season.

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3. Attend Christmas Mass

This is the first Christmas tradition that is the best and the most important; this is the entire reason for this holiday. Attending a church service for Christmas is really the best way to celebrate Christmas, especially with family and friends. This is a way to show respect for the holiday and to pay respect to Jesus, whom we should honor. Christmas mass is held at different times and days, depending on the religion and the church. For example, some Christian, Protestant, and Catholic churches will have midnight mass which begins before midnight on Christmas Eve. Other churches may have Christmas mass during Christmas morning or afternoon. Some churches will also hold a Blue Christmas service right before Christmas to honor those who have lost a loved one and are dealing with grief. Check with your local church for exact dates and times.

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4. Indulge in Christmas Dinner

From cooking at home to eating out, Christmas time always brings a Christmas dinner or special food. For example, the McRib from McDonald's is only available around Christmas time and only that time. Christmas dinner is usually a "go all out" event since it only happens once per year. There are many family gatherings and social events with friends and family, Multiple hours are spent in the kitchen just to prepare a Christmas dinner with all the fixings. The traditional Christmas dinner includes:

  • Turkey and or ham
  • Stuffing
  • Mashed potatoes with gravy
  • Vegetables
  • Rolls
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2. Enjoy Hot Cocoa and Movies

This is the best tradition because it is usually snowy and the weather isn't the best during this time. Temperatures are cold and the winds are picking up. This is the best time to stay warm and cozy inside with something warm to drink and a Christmas movie. There are many to choose from ranging from classics to new Christmas movies yearly. This is the most time when people will use their fireplaces as well, for an even more cozy and comforting feeling for the holiday season. This is also best the night of Christmas Day, so the rush can settle in.

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New Traditions to Try

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2021 Cristale Adams

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