Growing up in Southern California, we didn't get snow like everyone else to signify Christmas getting near. Usually the temperature was around 70-74 degrees, but a few times it pushed 80 degrees on or around Christmas! As a child, I knew Christmas was getting near by the family decorating traditions we had.
The tradition I looked forward to most was the little village my mom would display on top of the TV. Back then, the TV was a huge console, big enough for the display. My mom first placed the "snow" on the TV cabinet, then carefully placed the village, complete with Nativity scene, on it. I found out later on that is a Danish family tradition to set up a village display. I never grew tired of looking at that display.
I have tried to carry on many of these traditions with my own family. I have my own version of the Christmas village, plus a few more decorating traditions, such as hanging the stockings up and putting out all the little items I’ve been given or bought throughout the years.
I also have several Nativity scenes that I like to set up. We’re not particularly religious, but I find the Nativity a beautiful scene.
Decorating the outside of the house is also something that I like to do. I usually add to my collection after Christmas with the Clearance sales at the stores. I now have a pine garland to hang on the front porch railing, and, of course, Christmas lights have to be hung as well.
I hold the family traditions close to my heart, and I hope my children will do the same someday for their families.