Looking for some great Christmas Stocking Tradition Ideas?
I’m a big fan of traditions. And honestly, the holiday season just brings out the WANT to adhere to old traditions and start new ones for our family.
While sometimes I think back on the things that we did growing up during the holidays and smile, I’m also looking forward to creating our own holiday traditions as well.
Even in saying that, I have to come clean though…I’m still going to binge-watch old Christmas classics while eating too many sweets and treats. (That’s just one holiday tradition that I’m not quite ready to give up on).
I wanted to look for some Christmas stocking tradition ideas..because I think that’s a unique spin on Christmas traditions in general. And even though I know I have year after year of Christmases coming up to find and create traditions, there is one that I already know 100% without a doubt that our family will be participating in every single year.
The tradition of hanging up your Christmas stocking never gets old. (unless you’re using like an old sock or something as your stocking…and that’s a whole other thing right there).
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CHRISTMAS STOCKING TRADITION IDEAS TO JUMPSTART YOUR HOLIDAY SPIRIT
Before anything else, I think it’s important to establish what a tradition is. While it may seem like my nightly binge-watching of Netflix is a tradition….in all reality, that’s more of a habit instead. (but seriously, someone shout out a good series that I need to watch!)
A tradition is actually something that’s been passed down from families and is done or performed on the belief, rather than something factual.
Putting up the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve is a tradition, taking a family photo of everyone wearing ugly sweaters for your holiday card is a tradition….making grandma’s homemade pecan pie for your Christmas feast? Totally a tradition. (don’t ever break that one – pecan pie is life)
WHY DO WE HANG UP STOCKINGS ON CHRISTMAS?
Totally valid question, right? Like…who decided to put up old socks and fill them full of “things”? Seems totally odd when you step back and think about it, but of course there has to be some logical explanation to this now favorite Christmas tradition.
The simple answer is that we hang stockings to have them be like a pre-curser to all the gifts waiting under the tree….it’s a simple way to get fun foods, candies, and small trinkets without actually having to open up any sort of gifts.
And I will say that over the years, the size of the stockings just keeps getting bigger and bigger! When you can fit an entire watermelon in a stocking, the “simple” stocking might just be a bit too much.
Just because I was curious (and couldn’t sleep), I decided to research around on why stockings at Christmas are even really a “thing”. (If you have time, I highly recommend doing this! There are some really great stories out there about stockings.)
The one that caught my fancy was about a dad and his daughters who lived in poverty. The father was worried that his daughters would never get married due to their financial situation. Old St. Nick just happened to catch wind of this and later that night, filled up the stockings of the daughters (the stockings were out drying by the fire) full of gold. When they woke up, their financial status wasn’t an issue any longer and the dad no longer worried about them not finding a spouse.
First off…let’s all just agree that there’s a lot that is wrong with that story. Money doesn’t buy love and the dad shouldn’t have been so focused on his daughters getting married. (Obviously, he wasn’t afraid of having an empty nest at home)
BUT what I did love about the story is that it showed a stranger showing kindness and passing it on to others. And that’s a pretty cool way to associate the traditions of Christmas stockings.
So….we’ve got a bit of knowledge on why stockings are hung but now let’s talk about what goes into the Christmas stockings as well.
Related: How to Have a Fun Frugal Christmas
WHAT GOES IN A CHRISTMAS STOCKING?
I honestly feel that even though hanging Christmas Stockings is a big tradition, the items that go inside just might actually be an even bigger tradition.
If you were to stop and ask all your friends what they put in their kid’s stockings, I guarantee you that you’d get different answers and reasons from each and every one of them. And what it all goes back to is what they had in their stockings growing up.
I’m totally right, right?! I fully plan on filling my little one’s stockings with some of the same things that my parents put in ours.
But if you didn’t have a Christmas stocking tradition growing up, don’t worry. I’m here to fill your mind with all sorts of things that you can put in there!
Hear me out..this is actually quite common. But no squishy fruit allowed…I’m talking oranges and apples. The good stuff.
And the key to adding them is that they have to go in first. Right in the toe portion of the stocking. I don’t really know why so don’t ask but I will say that it makes that toe area fill out quite nicely.
(After all the years of getting an orange in my stocking I’m not certain if I ever actually ate it…but I do remember the tradition fondly.)
There can never be too much chocolate, right? Fill those stockings full of it (you can even combine your fruit and chocolate if you want!) and then hope that they forget a piece or two in it so you can chow down…(joking, kind of.) Just make certain that if you are actually hanging them from or on the fireplace mantle that you don’t get that chocolate too hot.
A stocking full of melted chocolate may not be the best thing to wake up to on Christmas morning. Or clean up.
A stocking just doesn’t have to be full of food. You can actually put in other items that your children enjoy as well. Think of smaller books that they can keep with them and read throughout the day.
Regular books or even puzzle books are always a big hit.
And while all of those can actually go into the stocking of anyone in your family, let’s break it down a bit more.
Related: 30 Memory Making Family Christmas Traditions to Start in 2019
WHAT DO YOU PUT IN A KIDS STOCKING?
The short answer? Anything and everything that you want. Putting items in a kids stocking is the fun part! Think wacky, fun and tasty and you’ve more than likely got a zillion ideas of what you could put into it. Just in case, here are a few to consider:
- Whoopie Cushion
- Lump of Coal
- Bouncy Ball
- Chocolate Coins
- Their favorite candy
- Pair of silly socks
- Makeup or jewelry
And that’s just the start of it. Anything that you want to add, you seriously can. Just put your focus on simple items that you know your kids will love and it can’t get much better than that.
WHAT DO YOU PUT IN A MOMS STOCKING?
For whatever reason, moms get the rap that they’re a bit harder to shop for. This just isn’t the case. Moms are actually really not all that picky…and I should know, I’m one of them!
Adding items to mom’s stocking is certain to be a hit if you include a few of these simple items:
- Fingernail polish
- Did I mention chocolate?
- Coupon book for chores around the house
- Essential Oils or some other type of relaxing spray
- Lip gloss
The list could go on and on. Mom’s really aren’t picky. AT ALL.
And just because I have to be true to me…I’m going to talk for a moment about how spending money and getting into debt for the holidays just doesn’t need to happen. I know, I know…it’s hard. Trust me, I’ve been there.
I used to think that spending thousands in a month for gifts and stockings was just the “normal” thing to do. But it’s really not…and ever since I realized that the holidays are that much less stressful.
To be fair, I’m also not saying that you have to be overly frugal, either. Just know your holiday budget, and stick to it.
Don’t be tempted by sales, or by the mindset of “keeping up with the Jones”. After all, the holiday really isn’t about the gifts or money spent…it’s about the traditions and time together.
I feel so much better putting that out there, so thank you for letting me vent!
Related: How to Have a Fun Frugal Christmas
CHRISTMAS STOCKINGS FIRST OR LAST?
While hanging up stockings at Christmas might be a true tradition, when you and your family open them can be your own fun variance.
Once I really dove into the topic and started really reading about stockings, I was amazed to see just how many ways people utilize the traditions of stockings at Christmas.
If you’re a family that doesn’t want to wait, who says that you have to? Opening up your stockings on Christmas Eve can be a super fun thing to do! In fact, it just might be that little extra that you need to get your kids to bed early knowing that the real presents are happening in the morning.
I also found out that many people start their Christmas morning with the opening of the stockings first. Like a burst of mini-fun before the big presents begin.
And while I didn’t see as much information about this as the others, there is even the option to save your Christmas stockings for last, too. Filling them full of tiny little gifts and then extending the Christmas day to have your stockings be a focal point sounds like fun. Make up a rule that every hour, on the hour, each person gets to pick one tiny gift from their stocking to open.
Not only does it keep the excitement going all day but it keeps that holiday joy just a little bit longer as well.
FUN WAYS TO DECORATE CHRISTMAS STOCKINGS
I may not be one of the crafty DIY type moms…but that doesn’t mean that I still don’t like to try. Give your children the option to make up their own stocking, either by sewing it or buying one of those kits, and let them have so much fun!
Get out all those craft items that you never thought you’d use…and see who can make the coolest stocking around. I’m thinking glitter, beads, anything and everything red and green…and maybe even some tinsel thrown in there. Let your inner festive fun shine if you’re ready and wanting to decorate your own stocking!
Related: DIY Christmas Ornaments to Make With Toddlers
ITEMS TO NOT INCLUDE IN YOUR CHRISTMAS STOCKING
Maybe this isn’t necessary, but if I’m giving you the information about what to put into your Christmas stocking, you might be wondering about what things you should leave out…Don’t stuff the stockings full of:
- Items that need to be kept cold
- Oversized items that don’t fit
- Items that could leak or melt
Besides that, have fun! If you think that your child will like it, give it a try. I like having 2-3 tiny presents in the stockings along with some fun treats and eats. But in all reality, there’s no perfect combination about what to include. It’s totally up to you!
This holiday season, celebrate with some Christmas Stocking traditions. Talk to your mom and dad and think tank on what you did growing up or branch out and make your own.
The best part about a tradition is that once you find one that works well for you and your family, it’s something that everyone puts forth the effort towards and looks forward to every single year.
Why not make your families “thing” Christmas stockings for the holiday? It’s such a fun, simple and often delicious tradition.
Do you already celebrate Christmas Stocking traditions in your house? Tell me about them!
3 thoughts on “Christmas Stocking Tradition Ideas To Jumpstart Your Holiday Spirit”
Stockings are my favorite. I love to fill them full with many fun and small items. When I was a kid I always looked forward to opening my stocking first thing. Our kids get one unwrapped gift from Santa and the stocking is from Santa too. They gravitate towards the unopened gift first, but the stockings are the first thing they actually open. We have breakfast before we open gifts from family, so they play with whatever Santa brought while I finish fixing breakfast.
We always put breakfast food in stockings – Rice Krispy Treats, pop tarts or some other fun snacky easy-to-eat treat. Our rule was they could not get their stockings until after 5am CHristmas Morning. They could get the stockings and bring them back to their rooms and pour them out. So they had something to do for a few hours before Mom and Dad (usually after a very long night putting things together!) wake up to eat and play. They couldn’t make noise but they could wake up siblings. Then they have breakfast handy and we all get up when Mom and Dad want to and open presents, then have a pre-made baked breakfast (cinnamon rolls, breakfast casserole, baked French Bread).
Your ideas are spectacular by the way!!!