Hop on over to Sandra's blog, Diary of a Stay at home mom, and check out Holiday Traditions. She is hosting a spot for us to share our traditions and read about other peoples traditions.. I hope you will all check this one out because the last time she hosted it many people had some great traditions that I myself am going to try.
My family moves around a lot because of being in the military so we don't really have any traditions we share with extended family. One thing we still do is open the kids gifts from their grandparents on Christmas eve. This way they can see what they got from their grandparents and we can also take pictures of them opening their gifts that come from far away. This leaves Christmas morning just for Santa.
Another think I do is serve crackers, cheeses,, and pepperoni, throughout the day so the kids can snack anytime they want before our big meal. I find they don't want to eat early because they are excited to open their presents so I just let them have cereal and then snack on the other stuff throughout the day. It's also nice to add some cut up veggies and dip. That way if anybody pops over, you can have a little something to share with them besides cookies.
We usually go to church the night before because I love the candlelight service. This always gets everyone excited and the kids usually perform in some kind of Christmas play. The church here usually has a living Christmas tree that is kind of fun to go see.
One other tradition we have is to go over to the Ft. Shafter Christmas Tree Lighting in early December. The kids love this because Santa comes on the fire truck and throws candy out at them on their way out. They also enjoy the Army band that plays Christmas carols. It's nice because it is warm here so they can play around in the big field behind us while the adults can enjoy the speeches.
I can't wait to see what others have written. Like I said hop on over because this will really get your Christmas spirit going. I hope you enjoy reading about all the other wonderful traditions out there. I know I will.