Launch New Holiday Traditions After You've Moved to Houston

By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group 

Holiday Cheer in New HouseRemember when you were a youngster and the best day ever was when the Sears Wish Book arrived in the mailbox? Okay, if you are too young to have that magical memory, the Wish Book was a Christmas catalog, sporting a stunning, delightfully illuminated tree on the cover, and pages and pages of toys, and bikes, and dollhouses--and coordinating pj's for the family. That catalog cover was a motivation for a perfect Christmas for scores of youngsters who're Amazon-savvy grownups today, and face it, you sort of miss the excitement of opening that Wish Book and seeing that year's Barbie Dream House on the inside cover.

That's the thing about traditions--they at some point phase out, and something new replaces the old. Often they arrive at a natural and organic finish--the coordinating PJs come to mind--but in other cases, a tradition ceases too unexpectedly, leaving you trapped in an emotional vacuum. This is a frequent occurrence when you've moved to Houston and are contending with that first holiday season in a new location, without your "this is what we typically do" safety net to traverse the season. Oh, you never genuinely like going to your Aunt Myrtle's for dry turkey for Thanksgiving? And the previous neighbors whose idea of decorating was a lawn (and roof) packed with inflatables?? Well, it's time to let go and initiate some new traditions--ones that you and your household want to do.

Friendsgiving

This is a millennial thing that has caught on over generational splits (some millennials have youngsters in high school currently), as a group that's on the move and thus spending the holidays away from home and relatives. Invite some new friends--neighbors, co-workers, kid's friends families--over for a Friendsgiving feast. You provide the turkey, or tenderloin, or the chopsticks (you are busting out--feel free to order in Chinese) and everyone brings a side or a dessert. Don't think you need to invite multitudes, ask as few or as many as you like.

Volunteer

There are numerous volunteer opportunities during the holidays, and you can go it alone, or as a family unit. Churches, YMCAs, and coffee shops are a super resource for identifying possibilities, covering anything from assisting in a soup kitchen to providing holiday food items and presents and wrapping gifts for kids.

Head to an Event

Shocking as it might be to grasp, there is far more to holiday activities than yet another amateur performance of the Nutcracker. You can find holiday shows, tree lightings, plays, as well as spiritual gatherings. A number of little municipalities host light extravaganzas--find out if there is one close to you. A few towns in the South set up out of doors ice-skating rinks during the holidays--sure, you may wear shorts, however do bring gloves since it's a bit chilly out there on the ice.

Movie Night

We all grew up with the Grinch, and also those awesome Rankin-Bass movies--who could ever forget the Burgermeister Meisterburger? Have a regular movie evening over the holidays and go back to the old "Miracle on 34th Street" one week, and "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" or perhaps "Christmas With the Kranks" the next.

Take A Trip

If you are not feeling the holidays this year, and you can handle it economically, consider taking a vacation. It isn't too late to book an excursion someplace toasty and exotic, but if that isn't in the finances visit someplace not far away. If you can easily get there, New York is at its best during the holidays--the massive tree at Rockefeller Center goes up prior to Thanksgiving, as well as the holiday shop windows down Fifth and Madison Avenues are practically worth the visit.

Keep in Touch

The online world makes it so simple to stay plugged in with old family and friends when you find yourself moving a long distance away--it's bittersweet, for certain, but ultimately more sweet than bitter. It is easy to share your celebrations immediately or even browse through photographs more leisurely down the road. In any event, keep upbeat--New Year's is only a week away and then it is all over until next year.

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