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Christmas traditions for a family of two

If you find yourself lamenting that so many Christmas traditions seem to revolve around children, we want you to know that that doesn’t have to be the case! You can develop special holiday traditions as a couple which will make the season magical! We asked our Fruitful Writers what little festive moments they treasure with their spouse throughout Advent and Christmas. Perhaps you will be inspired to pick some of these up yourselves, and many of them could still continue if your family grows someday. All of us at The Fruitful Hollow wish you and your family a hopeful Advent and a blessed Christmas season!


“Our Christmas traditions start right after Thanksgiving, when we start decorating the house with Christmas trees and other favorites. The decor will stay up until the end of the Christmas liturgical season.” (Sarah)

“We listen to Frank Sinatra and decorate the Christmas tree together. We also drive around at night finding houses that have music synced up to lights.” (Lauren G.)

“Every year, when it comes time to set up and decorate our tree, I'll begin the decorating and my husband will take out the waffle iron and start making what is now known as his ‘Christmas waffles’, a recipe adaptation of his own invention! He adds some lemon extract to the batter and serves the waffles warm with ice cream once the decorating is done. He started this as a way to enter into the festivities with me while doing an activity he enjoyed. It's something we look forward to and write into our schedule every year now and have even shared with my family, much to their delight! It's a real treat to enjoy the warm and sweet dessert while enjoying the light of our tree.” (Ellen H.)

“Last year we started doing a holy hour each Sunday of Advent. We would pray and light our Advent wreath and once the candles were lit, our holy hour would begin. My husband and I both loved it so much that we have decided to make it an Advent tradition.” (Lauren Allen) 

“We have an Advent calendar with a different German Christmas carol each day, so we sing those together throughout Advent. We celebrate the feast of St Nicholas in a big way so he’s become a big intercessor for our family. This year we celebrated the feast of St Lucy by walking around our neighborhood to look at everyone’s Christmas lights.” (Katie S.) 

“We light Advent wreath candles every night during dinner. We drink hot chocolate and drive around and look at Christmas lights. We make time to go to confession before Christmas. We have a Christmas tree in our bedroom and St. Nicholas leaves treats in our shoes on 6 December.” (Laura Golden)

“Every year my husband reads to me ‘A Christmas Memory’, a short story by Truman Capote. We gather by the Christmas tree and make hot chocolate and cookies for the occasion. It's one of my favorite traditions!” (Jana Zuniga Pingel)

“We love to stay in pajamas, eat a nice breakfast and watch A Charlie Brown Christmas or The Grinch Who Stole Christmas.” (Sonia-Maria Szymanski)

“We love checking out local breweries all year round but especially at Christmas. Winter is when we can fill a flight with all of our favorite types (stouts and porters) on tap. Sometimes we pick up tacos to eat there, sometimes a board game, sometimes there is live music. This year, our favorite brewery is hosting an ugly Christmas sweater contest!” (Brandy Norton)

“Christmas traditions have always been an area we have struggled with now that my nieces and nephews are teenagers and have moved away. You don't want to plan too many activities because you want time to reflect on the season. But purposely planning activities for two has helped the holiday feel less empty. For Advent, I started a new tradition (I am a recent convert) of having treats for the two of us and our pets on St. Nicholas Day. I also mailed goodies to my sister, brother-in-law, nieces, and nephew. This helped me get into the Christmas spirit, while in the years before, I struggled. This year, we have plans to visit a German Christmas market near us in the run-up to Christmas.” (Rachel Walters) 


“On Christmas Eve, we watch Die Hard and Christmas Vacation. If we are away from home on Christmas Day, our gift giving between each other is done on New Year’s Day. We prepare breakfast, usually French toast plated on our best dishes and set the table so it looks fancy and feels special, then exchange gifts.” (Sarah)

“My husband and I have attended Mass on Christmas Eve every year. Each time, it has set the tone for the celebration of our Savior’s birth that fills me with wonder and hope, just as a child on Christmas morning. The true meaning and the spirit of Christmas (the Holy Spirit, that is) never ceases, even as an adult, even as a couple walking through our ninth Christmas with infertility. Christmas time seems to heal even when infertility has exposed the parts of our lives that are ‘missing’.” (Danielle Thompson)

“On Christmas Eve, we wear matching pajamas and put away our cell phones. Spending intentional time with each other alone at night is something special we do. We share our dreams about the upcoming year and show each other how much we love the other.” (Lauren Allen)

“We always spend Christmas morning just us, and exchange our gifts as well as our stockings we put together without the other knowing. We find each other's favorite snacks and maybe slip a gift card in. My favorite stocking stuffer my husband got me was an ornament for the year we got married. We also traditionally have an Italian feast for dinner on Christmas, the same recipes my family used growing up. It's my husband's favorite meal of the year because it's so good and I put a lot of love into it.” (Marie Justin)

“The pandemic helped us establish a Christmas Day routine for the two of us. We have started making a Christmas lunch for two with all the fixings.” (Rachel Walters) 

“We always spend Christmas with family, so at some point on Christmas Day, we sneak off to a quiet place with a glass of something nice and we renew our wedding vows together. It’s a sweet time to take a breather and be grateful for the gift of our marriage amidst the chaos of a big family Christmas.” (Katie S.)

“My husband and I are typically visiting family and traveling over Christmas. Beyond traveling together and respective family traditions, we always make time to open our gifts to each other either before we leave for travel or immediately after so that we can establish our own traditions together.” (Chelsea Voboril)

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