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Meet my Best Friend, Mom Extradordinaire, and the OG of Memory Making…my mom, Susan Stone!

I get asked a lot where I learn all of these ideas for creating moments for my family, and I always say my mom. My mom is the master at creating magical moments and traditions, I was blessed with the best childhood, and I knew I would carry her legacy on with my own kids. I was curious about where her inspiration came from, but it was no surprise it was from my grandma. Growing up, my grandma was always creating elaborate celebrations and making special occasions special. 

In this episode, we talk about my mom’s childhood growing up and how Christmas was the most special, memory-filled time, how moms today can start traditions with their kids in a realistic way, and why these memories matter in the long run. You also get a sneak peek into our family’s most cherished traditions, and a couple little walks down memory lane between my mom and I! I love how she makes these moments so approachable and realistic for the busy mom. She really is such a pro!

I put a disclaimer in the beginning of the episode as well, but just in case you haven’t listened yet, we do talk about keeping the Santa magic alive…so be aware that the big guy is discussed if you are planning on listening with little believers in the room!

*This post may contain affiliate links, which means I may get a small commission at no cost to you if you purchase the item. Read more.

SHOW SPONSOR:

My Holiday Family Traditions Guide is ready and waiting for you! It is filled with every little moment, tradition, experience, and activity I do, did in my own childhood, or plan to do during the holiday season with my kids. I outline these all start to finish, encouraging you and setting your mind as ease when it comes to creating a magical season. This is a guide you’ll look back on year after year as you continue to create lifelong holiday memories and traditions with your loved ones. 

Grab your guides here!

Growing Up

Susan remembers studying her mom’s elaborately decorated house and thinking about recreating the moments and traditions with her own family one day. The tree was always spectacular, often flocked with beautiful gold ornaments (pictured below!), and tons of presents wrapped in green paper. Her mom always hosted a beautiful Christmas Eve party, with the same menu we still have for Christmas Eve to this day!

Menu:

Beer battered prawns, cheesy shredded potatoes, clam dip, oysters and cream cheese on crackers, and my uncle’s crab dip. Super light, right? We throw a salad and some fruit in there too. ?

I thought I’d share the recipe for our family’s clam dip. Do you have that one thing that is essential to your family gatherings? That you love because it’s childhood in a bowl, but when you tell other people about it, they don’t get it? That’s this dip!

Grandma’s Clam Dip:

2 or 3 cans minced clams (drain but keep some of the juice)

2 8oz cream cheese

1 small container of small curd cottage cheese

A few minced green onions

1 tea mustard

1 dash of Tabasco 

1 dash of Worcestershire sauce

Mix together, adding reserved clam juice to taste. Chill overnight. Add more clam juice to taste before serving if needed.

You’re welcome!

Me holding my sister in front of one of my grandma’s beautiful Christmas trees decked out with the gold ornaments and the presents wrapped in green paper!

Mom keeping the Christmas book tradition alive with my kids on Christmas morning!

Christmas Morning Traditions

Growing up, one of my most memorable traditions was sitting on the stairs with my sister waiting very impatiently to run downstairs to see all the presents while my parents danced. They always did a slow dance to Celebrate Me Home by Kenny Loggins. Looking back, I understand the value and really cherish that tradition for my parents. It was their way of celebrating the holiday together as a couple before the madness of gifts started. Now it’s all I can think about when I hear that song come on the radio!

Breakfast is one of the easiest traditions to start. You need to eat anyway, so why not start a fun tradition around this meal. My family’s traditional breakfast is Eggs Benedict, lattes, and homemade cinnamon rolls. Now that the kids are older, my family comes to our house in the morning. My husband, Ryan, makes lattes, then we all do stockings, then we take a break for breakfast before the main event, tackling the present mountain under the tree! It’s a nice way to break up the day and gives the kids a chance to play with some of the things before getting completely overwhelmed and overstimulated.

Another fun idea my mom shared was taking a pic after all the presents are opened. This is a fun keepsake for looking back and picking out the things your littles were into and seeing their big gift they were excited about that year. I loved that idea and I have those to look back on which is fun!

Christmas jammies and a book is still a tradition around here. At age 33 and 29, my sister and I still get Christmas pajamas on Christmas Eve. She continues this with my kids by giving them slippers and a book, and I get to give my kids their jammies and another book from us. Looking back through the books is always such a special moment when we are taking out Christmas decor!

Mom Advice: Just start. If you don’t have a Christmas breakfast, try one. Pick one thing and go for it, see how your family responds to it, and if it’s a hit repeat it. Traditions are all about repeating something special and creating a routine around that. It can be small and simple, it doesn’t matter! It’s about your family and your memories! 

Our Family Journals 

When I was younger, my mom started giving my dad a journal to replace cards. It acted as a keepsake, but also as a record for our family’s milestones and memories. We can look through the journals and know when our big life events, like getting a dog or my mom publishing a book, happened. My mom has one too and I know that both of these journals are cherished treasures for our family. I have journals for both Ryan and I for the kids and I can’t wait to see how the kids use them as we continue to grow as a family! It’s a super easy tradition to start…but one that keeps getting better and better as your kids get older! 

Memories in Moments 

20 years ago, my mom wrote and self-published a book, Memories in Moments. It is filled with timeless ideas for celebrating life’s special occasions. It’s a book I use with my kids, and is the inspiration for this podcast! As an entrepreneur, I am so proud of the accomplishments I witnessed my mom achieve. I am very lucky that I was able to watch her have a dream and work hard to make them a reality. Who would have thought that the 12 year old writing this congratulations birthday journal page for her mom would one day be interviewing her for the podcast inspired by it. Crazy where life takes you!

You’re in luck! To celebrate this interview, Susan has re-listed Memories in Moments on Amazon! You can grab your own signed copy with the link below. Might as well get a couple because they make great gifts for your mom tribe!

Just an FYI: you want to click on the new listing from Marally Publishing. For some reason Amazon is being kind of finicky with the main listing, but if you click the new + signed copy from Marally Publishing, you’ll be good to go! 

Order your own signed copy of Memories in Moments!

My sister and I’s Happy Birthday page in our family journal the year my mom published the book, Memories in Moments!

SHOW SPONSOR:

My Holiday Family Traditions Guide is ready and waiting for you! It is filled with every little moment, tradition, experience, and activity I do, did in my own childhood, or plan to do during the holiday season with my kids. I outline these all start to finish, encouraging you and setting your mind as ease when it comes to creating a magical season. This is a guide you’ll look back on year after year as you continue to create lifelong holiday memories and traditions with your loved ones. 

Grab your guides here!

Please SUBSCRIBE to the show, SHARE with your friends, and leave a REVIEW! This helps get the show in front of even more mamas, and allows me to get awesome guests who are going to blow your mind!

Head on over to my free Facebook group, Memories in Moments Insiders! There you’ll find additional resources to support each episode, more information on guests and how you can connect with them, visual and video tutorials, and best of all, connection as we navigate parenting and making memories together!

JOIN THE FACEBOOK GROUP! 

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