HCAU Holiday Traditions

Holiday season is upon us! And with it comes a wide range of traditions that varies from family to family. Below the ladies of Her Campus University of Aberdeen discuss how they celebrate the holidays and their unique family traditions:


“One tradition unique to my family is visiting the local farm shop to collect our turkey and trimmings on Christmas Eve!! We always have breakfast at the cafe there, and usually go home and watch the ultimate Christmas movie classics. We have to get up pretty early, but it is 100% worth it!” - Iona Hancock


“My dad always wakes me up with a champagne cocktail and I'm a big fan of them hahahaha” Emily Sullivan


“I think that it wouldn't feel like a proper Christmas without the essentials: sauna, rice porridge, mulled wine (or glühwein/glögg, however you wanna call it!), gingerbread flavoured everything, and Love Actually!”  - Emma Mailanen


“A week or two before Christmas all the girls in my family get together to craft and DIY a range of stuff like chocolate truffles, candles, soap, Christmas presents, decorations... anything. This is usually a two-day ordeal and we have a huge group Pinterest board to plan. We rotate who is hosting every year.”  -Eszter Sólyom


“On Christmas Eve we decorate our Christmas tree together with my brother and cousins while my grandmother reads a story about the importance of family and love that was written by my great grandpa. Also, this holiday wouldn't be the same without my family's special Christmas playlist.”  - Eszter Csorba


“Christmas morning, we all wake each other up and go downstairs together to open Santa presents. Then, tea and croissants for breakfast, and then we open our under-the-tree presents. My fav new tradition is we all go to the village pub for a few drinks before dinner to say Happy Christmas to everyone. Find Granda there every year.” - Shannon Dharmaratne


“It wouldn’t be Christmas without ‘From All of Us to All of You’ (not sure if this was ever a thing in the UK?)! I’m not sure if kids today care about it (since you can watch cartoons whenever now) but I grew up with it and, if nothing else, we always have it on in the background. Best enjoyed with glögg (with raisins and crushed almonds in it) 😄 it feels like a very Swedish/Nordic thing anyway 🤶🏻” – Linn Persson


“We always get new PJs the night before Christmas, and then I get up very early and wake everyone else up. Me and my Dad always have a beer or bucks fizz together and open the presents. Then, my grandparents come down and we have Christmas breakfast with Bucks Fizz. A super old tradition from when my great granny was alive is that we weren't allowed to ever eat Christmas dinner until the Queen’s speech was on— I think it's a very old fashion tradition and I’m not sure if many people still do this, but it's just carried on in my family. We also always have a game to play on Christmas day like pie face, although, it always ends with my Papay falling asleep after dessert. Oh! And I always need to watch Elf the night before!” - Amy Catlow


“Our tradition is always having a Chinese take-out on Christmas Eve and doing scratch cards, random I know, but it’s tradition! Then Christmas Day is very relaxed, and we always have a cooked breakfast before opening our gifts ❤️” – Megan Bruce


“My sister is still only 8 so Christmas still has a bit of magic for us. On Christmas Eve we each get to open one present from under the tree from our family and friends and then my brother and I will watch this two DVD collection we got when we were like 5, it had cartoons of The Snowman and Father Christmas and then we go to bed. When we wake-up, we open all our presents and then we go to my Grandma's for Christmas dinner where all my aunties, uncles and cousins usually are. After dinner, we open more presents and then we play charades and dingbats. When me and my brother were younger, we would practice a song and dance leading up to Christmas and we would ‘perform’ it in my grandma's massive fireplace. One of our favourites was the ‘Feed the World’ Band-Aid song. We also play a game of hide the Christmas pudding where my Grandma has a wee box of 8 mini wax Christmas puddings and we get turns to hide and find them around the house. Now that I'm older I get to see all my younger cousins get excited about it and it makes me so happy and I get to play the game of finding the newest Christmas tree decoration on my grandma's humongous Christmas tree.” – Jade Kay


“In my family, we all come downstairs together in our PJs and dressing gowns. Then, we make some coffee, and each have a cup whilst opening our presents. Then afterward, we all have toast/bagels ❤️” – Amy Scott


“On Christmas Eve my family and two others will all go to the pub together for a meal. Then, on Christmas Day, I always end up waking up at 5am but I’m not allowed to go downstairs until everyone’s awake, so I open my Santa Stocking and there’s always a cheesy Christmas film in it, so I’ll watch that on my laptop. When everyone’s awake, we go downstairs, and my Mum sets up the lounge (music, candles etc.) while I make hot chocolate. We open all the presents and then I’ll stick on Christmas 24 (for only the best bad hallmark Christmas films – yes, I have recommendations 😂) When we have Christmas lunch/dinner/linner my Mum will give everyone one more Christmas present saved especially for the meal, normally one funny gift and sometimes something more sentimental. Come evening time, we’ll watch the Christmas specials (Mrs. Browns Boys, Doctor Who, etc) before we go on to play all the board games.” - Meridyth Alderson


“Christmas season doesn’t start for me until my Mom turns on ‘All I Want for Christmas is You’ by Mariah Carey to decorate the Christmas tree—I used to make fun of her for sticking with the same song year after year, but now it doesn’t seem like Christmas without it! Christmas Eve is most special to me—my family spends the night at my Grandma’s house and we open presents and then watch It’s a Wonderful Life. That movie always happened to be on TV after we opened presents, so over the years it has just become tradition to watch it.” – Lindsay Hofer 


“Does anyone else's family do the redding the house for New Year?  It's when you clean the full house, sort of like a spring clean, and it's meant to rid the house of bad luck and welcome the new year in with the good. We also do first footing on Hogmany, it's a tradition that the first footer (first person that comes in the house after the bells) should be someone with dark hair and they have to bring gifts—you need a lump of coal, a box of shortbread, fruitcake and whisky it's so the bad luck stays away. Then Auld Lang Syne is sung when the bells have gone.” – Amy Catlow