12 Quirky Christmas Traditions You Should Try

For some it's opening matching pajamas on Christmas Eve, for others it's attending midnight Mass and then driving around and looking at holiday lights. What's your family's Christmas tradition? Here's a look at some quirky Christmas traditions people posted about on reddit.

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Scattering Gifts

One user said his family of five scatters the Christmas gifts across their 10 acres of wooded property. “Last year I had to cut a rope to lower a gift down because it was suspended 30 feet in the air.”

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Tough Wrapping

This family takes gift wrapping to a whole new level. “Coming from a family of construction workers and carpenters, every year they up the ante with more wood, nails, welding and duct tape. It’s kind of funny watching them work tirelessly for 20 minutes to get to the $10 gift card. It’s more of a bonding experience than anything.”

Spread some holiday cheer with these DIY gift wrap ideas.

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Christmas Elves

“On Christmas Eve, we have a tradition of the Christmas Elf,” said one reddit user. “All the kids take turns putting on the pointy green elf hat and putting a present under the tree. They are all in their 20s now and my wife still makes them do it. We have a bunch of pictures of bored, annoyed 20-year-olds posing with a present by the tree wearing a stupid green elf hat.”

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Animal Treats

One family’s pets even get in on the Christmas traditions. The reddit user said the family loads up the dog and cat in the car after Christmas Eve church service and they drive around looking at Christmas lights. They end with a trip to an ice cream shop where the dog gets a hamburger and the cat gets a small vanilla ice cream cone.

Check out these outrageous Christmas light displays.

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Pigs in Blankets

We all tend to eat a lot over the holidays, but one reddit user said his family goes overboard when it comes to a certain appetizer. “Our family always makes one hundred pigs in blankets, little cocktail sausages wrapped in bacon. There’s only five of us but making any less is considered sacrilege.”

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Christmas Morning Movie

One family had a rule that you could go through stockings before the adults are up, but no presents. That was the year one girl got the DVD of Mr. & Mrs. Smith in her stocking. “We watched Mr. & Mrs. Smith that year and my mom walked in and loved it. We now watch Mr. & Mrs. Smith every Christmas morning.” Stock up on these 13 things at the dollar store this holiday season.

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“My family re-gifts odd things, like a messed up version of tag,” one reddit user explained. “Gifts you might be the unsuspecting receiver of include a pan full of cinnamon rolls so burnt that you can’t even chip a piece off with a knife, a can of SPAM or a bowl of dried-out oranges and apples. It’s a great tradition, you always get that ‘Oh no’ expression when you’re the receiver, then immediately start planning the re-gifting with giddy anticipation.”

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Hidden Pickle

Some families hide a Christmas ornament shaped like a pickle in their tree. “Whoever finds it would get $10 or a small gift,” one reddit user said.

Decorate your tree with these five easy-to-make Christmas ornaments.

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Stocking Stuffers

When it comes to stocking stuffers, many have a tradition of giving or getting the same thing year after year. “My mom has put a can of Pepsi, a snack pack of Pringles and a sleeve of Pop Tarts in our stockings every year, without fail. I’m 25,” one reddit user said.

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Christmas Mugs

“My mother has gotten me, my brother and my sister different mugs every Christmas for as long as I can remember,” said one reddit user. “We each have our own collection on bookshelves.” The user added that his girlfriend’s family liked the tradition so much they started doing it as well.

Display your mugs with one of these 12 handy DIY mug trees.

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Scavenger Hunt

One family goes on a scavenger hunt for gifts. “Since my sister and I were about 15 and 12, our dad has made it a scavenger hunt. We start out with an intro poem. It has a vague clue to the first gift and each gift after has a clue to the next. At first they were just around the house but as we got older they spread around the neighborhood and around the city when we could drive. The whole thing is so unique, I love it.”

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Pear Ornaments

Here’s a quirky Christmas ornament tradition. One family with pear ornaments takes one from the tree and wears them hooked on their ear as they hand out gifts. “I really don’t know why we do this. My mom’s family never did it or anything, but every year I hang that pear from my ear and I never really realized how weird that was until my cousin and his wife spent Christmas with us last year and she kept laughing at how bizarre it was.”

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Rachel Brougham
Rachel Brougham lived through a major home renovation in 2019, knows the ups and downs of home improvement, and loves sharing tips with readers. A veteran journalist of both print and television, she’s won several awards for her writing and has covered everything from the environment and education to health care, politics and food. She’s written for several publications beyond newspapers including Bob Vila, Taste of Home and Minnesota Parent, and she currently writes a weekly syndicated newspaper column. Her memoir, Widowland, about the sudden loss of her husband, was published in 2022. She specializes in everything from home decor and design to lawn and garden, product reviews and pet care. When she’s not writing, you can usually find her tending to her garden (both vegetables and native plants), playing with her dog, watching sports with her family or getting some exercise. A native of Michigan, she currently lives in Minneapolis. An avid user of Instagram, you can follow her @RachBrougham.