Pajamas, movies, relish: hear some of our favorite holiday traditions


Theo Crazzolara , Pixabay

By Kelsey Shelton and Will Dahlberg

Tradition is a big part of the holiday season. Last week, during WBHM’s News and Brews community pop-up at Adventurer’s Coffee Co. in Calera, we asked some of those who stopped by about their unique traditions. Here’s what they had to say:

Jackie Batson

My family’s unique holiday tradition is that we always go to a movie on Christmas Day. When I was growing up, we would have all of our presents and gift opening and, you know, all the big stuff was done on Christmas Eve. So Christmas Day seemed a little anticlimactic. So even when I was a child, my mother and I would sneak off and go see a movie every Christmas Day. And we still do it now with our kids.

Becky Bolton

I guess my favorite thing to think about is going to my grandmother’s house and she had like eight children. And they would all bring these amazing dishes and put them all on the table and the cousins would all get their plates and go up to my grandmother’s fireplace room. And we would have our section to have our fun meal in while the adults stayed in the kitchen, talking about everything from politics to whatever. I still have granny’s little relish dish. And on one side you had your cranberry sauce and another side was pickled peaches. And it’s so hard to find pickled peaches, but I found some at Aldi the other day and I bought a jar.

Jonathan McSwain

I would say my family’s unique holiday tradition is the night before we each open a gift, kind of know what it is. It’s a Christmas-themed pajamas. And we all get into our Christmas-themed pajamas the night before Christmas, sit around and just enjoy each other’s time. I was probably in my late twenties and I’m a comic book nerd, so I forget whose idea it was. They got me a pair of grown man Superman pajamas. So I wore them. We all we all had a good laugh. I think I still have them somewhere.

Rick Walton

A family unique holiday tradition for me would be my mom’s homemade hard rock candy. She started when I was very young when we were in Michigan, and we would all be in the kitchen and she would be doing the candy. And my dad and I and my brother and sister would be cutting it. And then you use oils like oil of peppermint, oil of wintergreen for flavorings, and then use food coloring to make it whatever color you want. And the whole house would smell like it. Wintergreen was wonderful. Peppermint, you had to watch. You get too much and you would be crying. And it would literally burn your eyes. I learned that the hard way.

Jack Anderson

My name is Jack Anderson and I’m six years old. I’m from Calera. My favorite thing to do at the holidays is spend time with my family. When I decorate cookies, they look really cool. I like gingerbread man. And gingerbread girl and a stocking and a mitten. Merry Christmas!

Patrick Earwood

The most memorable present I’ve ever gotten growing up was probably a little .22 rifle because my parents hid it right behind the curtain just like they did in A Christmas Story. How the gave it to me was hilarious. My dad and my mom were like, “I see something.” There was nothing there. They moved the curtain and it was right there and I opened it and I was not expecting a cool, little gun like that. It was awesome.

Nedra Moore

My family’s unique holiday tradition is our Elf on the Shelf. I have done that with my kids for the past ten or eleven years. They’re always excited to see what Chippy does next. Chippy likes to invade their drawers. Chippy likes to, you know, we’ll have like a straw and put in their favorite drink with him. Drinking it. We’ve even built a drum set out of canned goods, take the wrappers off and make a little drum set. We have a helium tank and we’ve blown up a ton of balloons, put Chippy inside of a paper basket and he’s floating in the house like he’s in a hot air balloon.

Nathan Kelly

My family’s unique holiday tradition is really the just amount of food that we have at the table every year. There’s always the same staples — shrimp puffs. It’s like a mountain of puff pastries. You cut them in half and there’s a shrimp mixture. It could be spring or summer, every once in a while the craving will pop in your head of “Oooh, I wish I could have these right now.” But you have to save them for Christmas otherwise it’s not as special. Very good stuff.


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