When Husband was growing up, his family adopted the Christmas customs of their close friends who were Danish. They had a special meal on Christmas Eve and then they opened their presents.
It was nice when we were ‘going out’ because I could spend the evening of the 24th with his family and at the crack of dawn on 25th I could hare around the M25 and arrive at my own home and I hadn’t missed anything because my family don’t open presents until after lunch on Christmas Day. (Realistically this could be as late as 3 or 4pm…)
When we got married we spent our early Christmas doing the same thing. I’m sure all parties were delighted there was no ‘them and us’ going on.
But when we had children and had one or two Christmases on our own, we had to negotiate.
So I told Husband, “I’m NOT opening my presents on Christmas Eve; that’s just crazy.” Poor Husband.
We have a special Christmas Eve meal (his tradition) which starts the festivities off early (my family might still be shopping for gifts at this point) and we have a table present (his tradition.) We do the altogether more average present opening after breakfast on the 25th (more my tradition.) We have the Christmas Creatures (my tradition.)
One of the customs I have willingly adopted from Husband’s upbringing is the family Christmas game. They had a new board game each year and yesterday I went out and bought ours: