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The Truth About Holiday Traditions Is About To Be Revealed. #Pinesol

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The Truth About Holiday Traditions.
It’s pretty simple actually, it just took me a little while to figure it out.

We have a small family here in Canada. In fact, there is only my parents, siblings and my kids. We are a close unit, we talk practically every day and see each other as often as we can. Back home in El Salvador, we have a big family. My Abuelita from my Mom’s side had 11 children and they’ve all had their own children and even great grand babies at this point. We also have family in the US and Australia, but we are the only ones out here in Canada.

Even though we are small in number here, we are very close. The holidays are a time when we all get together and just spend time together. We eat our favorite meals, watch movies and just talk sometimes. The holiday celebrations are grand in our country, full of music, good food and drink and even fireworks. The parties are filled with family and run until really late. Back home here in Canada, things aren’t as grand, but they are just as loud and filled with love and family.

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I have very fond memories of our holidays. Even down to our first Christmas here in Canada. Our parents moved us here with just 3 large suitcases and a dream for a brighter future for their kids. Our first Christmas was a memorable one due to the kindness of our Canadian sponsors. They brought over gifts, decorations and food, and made us feel welcome. Every year after that, we celebrated with much gratitude.

I knew that my Mom would be preparing the house for friends and family to enjoy the holidays when I could smell the crisp and clean aroma of Pine-Sol permeating our house; I just knew that in a few hours’ times we would be eating a good meal and having a blast.

The smell itself evokes the feeling of happiness and the comfort of cleanliness. I remember coming home from school to that familiar scent and breathing it in made me smile. I can still hear her asking one of us to get her the “Pine-Sol” in her Spanish accent. Actually, I say it in the same accent because that’s how it’s always been said in our house.

That piny scent is the reason why I use it myself in our home and lo and behold–my girls love how Pine-Sol smells. When I’m getting the house clean and guest-ready for the holidays, you can guess what the house smells like. Now they know that in a few hours they will be with family and with their tummies filled.

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Apart from my Mom passing down the cleaning gene to both my sister and I, we also have some traditions from back home that we do with our girls. Of course, we decorate our tree together and every year the girls take turns putting up the star. We always leave carrots for the reindeer and cookies and egg nog for old Saint Nick. We decorate a gingerbread house every year too and the girls absolutely love it.

A tradition that I have passed on to the girls from my own childhood is a Spanish tradition of opening a gift on Christmas Eve and in the morning they will find a gift under their beds. It’s an ode to how we received our gifts from Santa Claus in El Salvador.

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One thing that we have started on our own is collecting Christmas ornaments. Ornaments that celebrate important milestones, others that evoke memories of where we have travelled. 

The truth about the holidays is that they are all about family and the traditions in which we partake in together. It doesn’t matter if you have a small family or a huge family with a crazy Uncle Fred. Whether you are near or far–one thing is the same.

It’s  the love we all share and the memories we cherish fondly, the traditions we partake in and the new ones we create.

What are your family traditions during the holidays?

Let me know, til then–cheers m’deres!



This post is sponsored by Pine-Sol. With a strong heritage and long legacy, Pine-Sol is a long-standing tradition in many Canadian homes. Apart from the classic pine scent, Pine-Sol is also available in a variety of long-lasting scents – mandarin sunrise, lavender, lemon and sparkling wave. You can use different scents throughout your home to change the mood.

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  1. I love to listen to Christmas music with my husband while we put up the tree. We also watch a lot of Christmas specials.

  2. We bake cookies, open a gift Christmas eve and decorate the tree as a family. I cook a huge dinner too. Favourite time of year

  3. I love the holidays with our family and like you, we talk daily with out close-knit family 🙂 We have many traditions, probably most are similar to many other families. My favourite is getting together for our Christmas Eve "party" with our family and friends before celebrating Christmas the next day 🙂

  4. What fun traditions! I love making gingerbread houses and white elephant gift exchanges! Can't wait for Christmas to get here!

  5. Usually every year while putting up our tree we listen to Christmas songs and drink hot chocolate. This year we didn't do that, and I feel so bad about it!

  6. Our family traditions for the holidays include, making cinnamon rolls for christmas morning, decorating the house and listening to christmas tunes.

  7. We have a lot of traditions. Like putting the tree up Thanksgiving weekend and certain movies we watch every year.
    My recent post Two great gift ideas from Lakeshore Learning! #2015HolidayGiftGuide

  8. It is crazy how scents can evoke memories and emotions. The smell of fresh donuts always reminds me of my dad making donuts before the holidays.

  9. This year will be 8 years that we have been blessed with grandkids have decorated our tree as they wish,they are now 9/10.every year brings new ideas and amazing memories.

  10. We almost have the same traditions. Our Christmas eve is spent at home. On Christmas Day, we wake up early to open what Santa has brought the kids. We have lunch at my in laws and dinner with my dad and mom.

  11. The smell of Pine-Sol is the best smell in the world – lol – it always reminds me of my mom's home and nothing smells as clean as that old, familiar smell. I love reading about all the different holiday traditions.

  12. We love this time of year. We always listen to Christmas music while decorating the tree or doing a Christmas craft. We started doing DIY ornaments with the kids this year- they love that!

  13. we have a Christmas eve gift tradition too but that's so cool you hide it under their bed. I never knew that's where Santa leaves gifts in El Salvador!

  14. We did not have much of a christmas tradition in zambia we were just thankful were still alive be able to be with our families but she my parents moved us to the UK we have developed a few that I hope to share with my future kids

  15. Your tree is gorgeous, and you guys did a fantastic job on the gingerbread house. How cute! I've always loved the way pine sol smells! It's my first choice over the others.

  16. We always watch a family movie on Christmas eve, and order Chinese food. We let the kids open one gift and on Christmas day while the kids are off in their rooms playing with their toys my hubs and I enjoy a nice quiet movie while we cook dinner!

  17. Every November my mom, sister and I pick out one new ornament to represent that year. Although my FAVORITE holiday tradition is spending Christmas day in Disney World <3

  18. We have many traditions but one that the kids really love is making a Gingerbread house. Never fails.. It falls apart.. lol

  19. I love holiday traditions. Ours still get changes, or revamped here and there but I try to stick with them as much as possible! I have loved reading everyone else fun Christmas Traditions!

  20. I love the holidays! Growing up our biggest Christmas tradition was my grandpa would read me “twas the night before Christmas” and then I would go to sleep and Santa would decorate the tree. I can’t wait to start traditions like that with my own kid when he gets a little older.

  21. I love collecting ornaments too. My grandmother gave us one each year with the year on it so I've got quite a collection from my early years that are very special to me.

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