Our Christmas Family Traditions


December is a crazy time of year for us!  From activities at church to laundry to homework to school concerts to basketball practice, this month has it all.  This month also holds some of my favorite things, like our family traditions.  Here are a few of the simple things we enjoy around Christmas: 


Christmas Eve Breakfast at Cracker Barrel

Fred and I started this when we were dating.  We had so many family functions to attend we just wanted to start a tradition of our own.  So, breakfast at Cracker Barrel fit.  As long as we are in the South, there is a Cracker Barrel close by.  Now that the boys tag along, it makes for even more of a fun tradition.  I’ve kept our receipts from previous years.  I think the first one I kept was when Clayton was a toddler.  Our bill was $16.  I think our bill last year was around $50.  Uncle Hershel’s breakfast, anyone?!?

Christmas Lights and Scavenger Hunts

We will take the boys to look at Christmas lights around our city.  We will start off with Starry Nights at Shelby Farms and then we will have a picnic in the car while we drive around.  We’ll also add a little competition with a scavenger hunt, because, after all, these are boys that we’re raising.


Christmas Eve Service at our church

This is a new tradition for us, but I love it.  All of our family attends.  We sing by candle light, we take the Lord’s Supper, handbells will be played. It’s one of my favorite nights of the Christmas season.  All is calm and all is quiet…

If you don’t have a church home, if you live in the Memphis area, or if you are visiting in the area, and would like to join us at Ellendale, our services begin at 5:00 pm. You can click here for the address to the church. If not, find a church in your area that has a Christmas Eve service and attend.


My Mother’s Sausage Pinwheels

As far back as I can remember my mother has made sausage pinwheels at Christmas.  The ingredients are only biscuit dough and sausage, but sausage pinwheels are so much more. As much as I cook, I have never attempted to make them. They are like the holy grail from my mother’s kitchen. I don’t even have the recipe.  I think this recipe is similar though.


My Grandmother’s Homemade Boiled Custard

When I get to heaven I hope someone greets me at the gate with a cup of my grandmother’s boiled custard. It is the only beverage I know of that is worthy of the title “heavenly.”  My grandmother only makes it at Christmas.  I have her handwritten recipe and it is a treasure.  I’ve made it one time, but my grandmother’s is better.


Big Breakfast Christmas Morning

Since we get up early around here, we usually open presents and then leisurely prepare breakfast.  We will have ham and rolls, sausage pinwheels, egg casserole, cherry danish, and anything else I (or my mother) decide to add.


Steak at Fred’s Parents’ House

I don’t remember when this tradition began, but I’m glad I am a part of it.  My father in law can grill a steak that will absolutely  We will open presents and then eat.  It’s a glorious evening.


Playing a Game to Open Presents on Christmas Morning

We give our boys three gifts at Christmas.  After one Christmas when Clayton and Jack were 4 and 1, it took them 1.5 seconds to open everything, and then we were just staring at each other at 4:37 am.  The next year, I decided to add a little fun and make things last a little longer, so we started playing a game of some kind.  One year, the kids went on a scavenger hunt.  One year, I wrapped all of their presents in one big box.  Then they had to get to the bottom of the box to find which presents were theirs, based on the design of the wrapping paper.  Last year, they had to roll dice and put on winter gear to open a present.  (Too long to explain.)  My boys pretend like they are put out with the games, but deep down I know they love it!





Traditions are really nice, but they are not what we worship.  Ultimately, I pray that we all are able to experience and know the love of Emmanuel, God with us. It is because of Him that anything is possible. It’s because of His presence in our lives that we are able to have peace, joy, and hope. My memory verse for December has been my lifeline through this month. Through all the parties, programs, and practices, it has resounded in my ears. I pray that you will let these words fall on fresh ears and settle your soul, because that shoot that came up from the stump of Jesse almost 2000 years ago makes all the difference in my life.  I pray He does in yours as well.



“A shoot will come up from the stump of Jesse; from His roots a Branch will bear fruit. The Spirit of the Lord will rest on Him–the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and of might, the spirit of the knowledge and fear of the Lord.” Isaiah 11:1-2





I’m a writer, new mom and foodie. I love sharing what I know while making others feel beautiful. On this blog, I share my healthy lifestyle, simple meals, fitness tips and experiences.

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Kara Bout It