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December 11, 2012

Holiday Guest Post // Traditions, from Shannon Quigley

Living in California we don't get the white snowy Christmas that many people around the country do. 
When December rolls around and it's 70 degrees outside it's time to take matters into your own hands and create that Christmas mood!

This usually begins by us starting to play more upbeat instrumental jazz music. I love the feel that jazz creates in the house. It makes it feel so cozy and creates a happy atmosphere. Our Christmas decorations go up and we pick out our tree. Our family still will not do the fake tree thing so each year we go out  to the lot and pick out the perfect tree for us! We light yummy candles, bake more often and watch classic Christmas movies. 

It has become my tradition that each year I have to find out when the 24 hour marathon of A Christmas Story begins and watch it as many times as possible! 

This year our family will be unofficially doing advent. We will be intentionally finding ways to put the focus of the season back on Jesus. So far this has been more consistent dinner prayers and conversation involving Jesus, His birth, life and His amazing love.

We also have an Elf on the Shelf named Toby who visited us for the first time last year. He played lots of mischievous tricks on our family! My son fell so much in love with this elf he couldn't bear to know that he would be leaving us on Christmas morning. We awoke to find that Toby had not left us and is now the newest member of our family! As December approached this year we wondered if Toby would become active again and we're happy that he HAS! My son loves waking up in the morning and searching to find what trouble his elf has gotten into during the night!

Each year my son and I will add a new Christmas book to our collection. We display the books and then read them from time to time during the month.

On Christmas Eve my son and I will bake a round of Christmas cookies to be ready for Santa's coming that evening. We also host an evening gathering for our family. We each prepare an appetizer and spend time together snacking and playing games! It is a really fun time to be together and share in the holiday spirit! We each also open one gift.

When our family leaves we get our plate of cookies and milk out for Santa, put out a letter and get cozy in our beds and anxiously await Santa's arrival! Christmas morning my husband and I wake up early, get our coffee ready and sit in the living room until our son comes out. When he's awake we just go for it! We spend the rest of the day snacking, enjoying each others company and playing with new toys!


Shannon blogs at Imperfectly Perfect Grace. Thank you so much, Shannon, for sharing some of your family's Christmas traditions!

There are two spots still available for holiday guest posts; if you are interested in being featured, please contact me -- I'd love to have you!


  1. Shannon I love your Christmas traditions! Especially putting the focus back on our savior! love that! I love the photo of your son holding Toby! So cute

  2. gorgeous photos!

    lots of love from the c&p girls,
    the casper&pearl blog

  3. YAY I just love Shannon! And those cookies look YUMMY!! great guest post!!
    Have a blessed day!!

    1. Shannon has such a sweet spirit! I have to agree with you, Cat -- a great guest post!

      Happy Wednesday to you.

  4. Love your photos! The picture with the elf is adorable and the cookies look so yummy


    1. Thanks so much! I will pass along your compliment to Shannon, in case she doesn't see it here!

      Such a fun guest post, wasn't it? Thank you for stopping by!

  5. Love to find new blogs! I live in Cali too! Today was colder than most...a chilling 55 degrees! Haha but it did feel a little more like Christmas time.

    1. That just cracks me up, Kristina, because here in Colorado, it was 60 degrees today -- it has been SO WARM for here! I went out in jeans and a tee, and it felt nearly divine. ;)

      What part of California do you live in? Tim and I actually moved to Colorado from Cali!

  6. So darling! I love to read about other people's Christmas traditions. I always need new ideas! We are REALLY wanting to start some good traditions now too since Jax is starting to realize what's going on more!

    1. Yes, us too! I think it's super fun hearing / reading about what other people do this time of year.