WAEF Board & Students Share Their Holiday Traditions!

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Our Christmas tradition is getting together at my grandmas house with all our family. We have a lot of food and a wonderful time with everybody!  -Laura Quintero Martinez

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Donating gifts to families in need. -Diana Picazo

On Christmas Eve, my family invites our extended family and friends over for a Christmas dinner that lasts long into the evening. After our guests have gone, my immediate family and I stay up until midnight and we each open up at least one of our presents.-Cecilia M. Luevanos-Casas

One of our Christmas traditions is to pile in the car on Christmas Eve, play Christmas music, and drive around our neighborhood and admire all of the Christmas lights. -Amanda Oliver

Taking the family out to cut down a Christmas tree.  -James Foreman, WAEF board

My family celebrates Christmas differently every year. Being Mexican, I have a very large family and my parents can't always afford to host an annual gathering. Sometimes our Christmas parties include just us and one other relative's family. Despite the variation in size of the celebration, delicious food, movies, jokes, and storytelling are always part of it. -Elizabeth Vaca

My family traditions are coming together, eating food like tamales, pork ribs, and flan, and doing a white elephant. -Jesus Mendoza

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For Christmas, we usually make tamales y posole as a family. We give grace before enjoying our meal then stay up watching movies, playing different games, or just talking. This is not just a small party, I am talking about half of my family members. After staying up late, we stay up until 12 am to open presents. -Evelyn Negrete

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One of my family traditions is to dedicate a day to cook holiday food. We all spend time together and get the chance to eat delicious Mexican food. -Amairani Martinez

I am following my Mom's Christmas tradition  of making  a yeast bread roll for Christmas morning. It has a filling of candied fruit, raisins, nuts, sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and lots of butter. Over the years many friends, family members and teachers have been given this bread to celebrate Christmas. -Ruth Pringle, WAEF board

 My Christmas tradition is spending the holiday on the west side of the state at my grandparents' house in Auburn. Each year we pack up our Christmas presents, food, games, etc., and drive over on the morning of Christmas Eve. Our car is always loaded and we laugh that there is little room for us kids or the dog! That evening we attend church and then head off to my great Aunt's house for Christmas dinner, which always includes family recipes of lasagna, apple salad, raspberry pie and 3-layer salad. The menu is always the same and I look forward to that meal every year. On Christmas Day, our family takes a morning hike in the woods and then spends the rest of the day making dinner and opening presents with my grandparents, aunts and uncles, and any other relatives that stop by.....and of course, we eat too much!-Neil Carleton

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We love to spend time as a family watching movies, going sledding and playing board games. -Carolina Calderon

For Christmas Eve we typically gather up at one of our family member's house. There we eat food that everyone cooks, we all spend some great family quality time, some sing, some say jokes, others catch up with one another. And, Typically we wait until Christmas Day at 12AM for everyone to start opening their presents. -Esteban Garcia

The traditions that still are followed by my family include: hanging Christmas lights, vigil Mass on Christmas Eve, sitting around in the living room once everyone is awake and passing out presents from beneath the tree. And Yam Pudding with the meal! -Anthony Boteilho

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We go to Christmas Eve mass and make a Crab Louie for dinner. Then we all head to bed in new pjs to wait for Santa. -Kailan Dunn, WAEF board

My family enjoys spending time in the outdoors. It's a tradition in my family that on Christmas Eve we spend the day together outside either hiking or skiing. This is a great way to celebrate with loved ones. -Casey Jackson

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We make tamales during the 24th and stay up all night till 12am so we can open up our Christmas presents. -Cesar Cuevas

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A Mast family tradition as follows: homemade ham and vegetable stew (family recipe from many generations back) on Christmas eve, followed by a candlelight Christmas service at Church, and our annual Christmas caroling around my parents neighborhood on a decorated/lit hayride looking at lights. Their neighborhood goes all out with lights each year and awards the "12 homes of Christmas", of which my Dad is a winner several years in the running.
-Bob Mast, WAEF board