My Family’s Christmas Traditions

Someone on Twitter asked me to write about my family’s Christmas traditions.  I think some things vary from family to family and from region to region, so I’m going to focus on which traditions we do as a family.

Christmas season usually starts right after Thanksgiving is over.  Thanksgiving is the 4th Thursday of November.  The weekend right after that, I usually put up lights outside of the house.  I like blinking, multicolored lights the best, although most people in our neighborhood put up white lights.

We also go to big festival of lights events.  Disney World has an amazing one, but also local communities like my own have some smaller festival of lights.  Here at a local county park, you can drive around and look at the huge displays of lights.  There are themes to the lights like underwater animals and toys.  Also, they have a huge fire where you can roast marshmallows.  Additionally, you can visit Santa, ride a small train, ride a carousel or buy some treats to eat.  I always make sure we visit Santa there, at a party, or at a shopping mall. The kids like to tell Santa what they want for Christmas.  And we make sure we take a picture of them with Santa as well.

Another one of my family’s traditions is to send out Christmas cards.  I usually send them to family and close friends.  Sometimes I enclose a picture of our family as well.  I usually send these out early in December because people like to display their Christmas cards on a door or on their fireplace mantel.

Listening to Christmas carols in the car and watching Christmas shows on TV is another family tradition. I like watching old Christmas movies like ‘Holiday Inn’.  My kids like to watch old classic Christmas cartoons like ‘Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.’

Going Christmas caroling is a tradition we don’t do every year.  But we have done it in the past.  We get a group of the neighborhood kids and we walk around the neighborhood and sing Christmas carols.  Sometimes the neighbors give us cookies or candy as a way to say thanks.

Those are our family traditions for the time up until Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.  I’ll write about those next week.  Post a comment about how you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or any other holiday you celebrate around December or January.

Snowy Weather Words

My brother, Robert, is a meteorologist, so I’ve grown up talking about weather almost my entire life. Today my brother and I were talking about a huge snowstorm that is going to his his area in Tennessee tonight.  This inspired me to make a post about snowy weather words.

Snowstorm The schools will be closed tomorrow because of the big snowstorm tonight.

Sleet – This is snow that melts in the sky and refreezes before it hits the ground into little ice pellets. 

Freezing Rain – This is snow that melts into water while it’s falling to the ground and then will freeze once it hits the ground because the ground is below the freezing point.  Last night we had freezing rain and now the roads are all slick. 

Hail – This is NOT winter weather. This is similar to sleet, but it happens in the summer from Thunderstorms.  We had golf ball sized hail and it dented the hood of my car.

Snow flurries – This is very light snow.  My children were disappointed that we only had snow flurries today and they couldn’t build a snowman.

Wind chill factor – This is when the wind makes it feel colder than it actually is.   Wow, it sure feels cold out here.  I’m sure it’s due to the wind chill factor.

Frost – ice crystals.  I woke up in the morning and there was frost all over the grass. 

Blizzard – a huge snowstorm with lots of wind. 

A blanket of snowI woke up in the morning, looked out my window and I saw a huge blanket of snow. 

Route, Root or Rout

Someone asked me on my facebook account what the difference was between route, root and rout.  I thought I’d answer that question here.

Route – A route is a road or a highway. One day I’d like to travel on Route 66. Also, route could be a particular way one travels.  The mailman takes the same route every day.

Root – Root means to cheer someone on.  The cheerleaders rooted for the football players.
Root is also the bottom part of a plant that is under the ground.  The root of the plant soaks up the water.
Root beer is a type of soft drink that happens to be my favorite drink.  Even though ‘beer’ is in the word, it is not alcoholic.

Rout – Rout means a riot, huge defeat or a fight after a big defeat.

There are also a few other less used definitions for these words, but these are the most used, in my opinion.