Sunday, December 18, 2011

Four Holiday Traditions I Love

By Laura Kaye
With just a week until Christmas, I’ve got holiday traditions on the brain! And since my debut Decadent title, Just Gotta Say, features a foursome, I thought I’d share four holiday traditions I love and my family and I observe. *winks*

Ornaments That Tell a Story. This was a tradition I learned from my mom. Growing up, we bought an ornament on every vacation, and as an adult, I continued that tradition. I also buy ornaments to mark special occasions, favorite things, or places my husband and I have worked (university ornaments, for example). I give my kids a special ornament every Christmas, and I plan to give them those ornaments when they marry as a start for their own trees. When I look at my decorated tree, I see stories, and I love that. Unpacking ornaments each year is a walk down memory lane.

PJs on Christmas Eve. LOL This was another one I learned from my mom. The funny thing is, receiving an early gift of pajamas on Christmas Eve did not thrill me when I was a kid. Who wants clothes when there are toys to be had? However, as a mom, I now love this tradition. And, yup, I’m now tormenting my own children with new PJs on Christmas Eve. It makes for good Christmas morning photos, and I have to believe one day they’ll cherish this tradition the way I do now. *grins*

Milk and Cookies for Santa. We also leave carrots for the reindeer, of course. What I like about observing this tradition is it means the kids still believe in Santa Claus. Before dinner time on Christmas Eve, they start reminding me we need to get the milk and cookies ready for Santa. So, say it with me: WE BELIEVE!

Red Panties for Luck. Christmas doesn’t own all the fun traditions. Here’s one for New Year’s. Want to have good luck in the new year? Want to get lucky on New Year’s? Wear red panties on New Year’s Eve! I learned this the first time I traveled to Italy, where this tradition is widely observed. So, for me, this tradition is a twofer—I get the luck and the memory of Italy. What could be better?

So, what’s one of your favorite holiday traditions? I love hearing how other families celebrate this time of year.

With this blog post, I’m giving away one copy of my ebook AND $10 Amazon gift cards just in time to fill all those new kindles! Here’s how the giveaway will work: 1-15 unique commenters = 1 GC; 16-25 commenters = 2 GCs; 26+ commenters = 3 $10 Amazon GCs! The more commenters, the better your chances to win! So spread the word!

Thanks for reading! And Happy Holidays!
Laura Kaye

Buy Laura's Books
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About Just Gotta Say:
Callie Davis stumbles upon two of her three male roommates in a surprising, molten-hot midnight tryst and discovers a side of herself she never knew existed. Desire to play with them grips her, and she can’t stop fantasizing about having multiple men, particularly her three long-time best friends.

Callie is thrilled when a guys’ night out gives her the perfect opportunity to recreate her fantasy, with the help of a threesome porn video and a bag of sex toys. That is, until Lucas, Jack and Noah return early and catch her in the act. More than anything, the guys want to make her fantasy come true. But Callie has a secret, and she can’t help wondering if being with all three men will risk the future she’s always wanted with one of them.

As three strong sets of hands caress and undress her, Callie surrenders to desire, because sometimes you just gotta say...yes.

About Laura:
A multi-published author of paranormal, contemporary and erotic romance, Laura Kaye’s hot, heartfelt stories are all about the universal desire for a place to belong. Laura is the author of the bestselling contemporary romance HEARTS IN DARKNESS and the bestselling and award-nominated paranormal romance FOREVER FREED. JUST GOTTA SAY is Laura’s third published book and debut erotic romance. Her fourth book, contemporary fantasy romance NORTH OF NEED, is the first in a 4-book series and releases November 1. Laura lives in Maryland with her husband, two daughters, and cute-but-bad dog, and appreciates her view of the Chesapeake Bay every day.


  1. Hi Laura! I like your ornaments collection story, that's very sweet. We weren't very big believers in Santa Claus in my family growing up. My elder sister and i would get up early every Christmas morning to prepare breakfast in bed for my mom and we would all pack up in her room on her bed and watch Christmas movies until about 10 O'clock, then my mom would leave us to do the final touches for Christmas dinner.
    Happy Holidays!


  2. That sounds wonderful, Criss! Thanks for commenting!

  3. Happy Holidays to you =)

  4. We do the ornament thing. No pj's on Christmas Eve, but each person gets to open one present on Christmas Eve. And there are still Santa presents and a filled stocking for my teen boys.
    We also cook a killer breakfaston Christmas Eve.

  5. every year the boys and i love to make new ornaments for the tree. this year we went a tad overboard because we did salt dough ones. they did a set with some friends of mine's kids and then her and i wanted to make our own so of course we had a whole batch of our own. :p we had a blast though. we also allow one present to be opened Christmas eve and we have gotten into a tradition of spending Christmas in Joplin with his parents and siblings.

    Terri M

  6. Hi Laura - We do all the same traditions - *except* the red panties ones. hmmm. I wonder if I can find red granny-panties? lol The ornament tradition is my favorite and I am always looking for things to make into an ornament. For my daughters' first falls, I decoupaged a tiny leaf on a wooden circle,and trimmed it and drilled a hole to hang it. Even my 17yo's leaf is still bright red! Thanks for sharing your traditions. :)

  7. Hi, Laura! I also do the ornament thing. Every vacation is relived when I decorate the tree each year.

  8. Christmas traditions are so wonderful! My sis and law and I do a marathon baking session and give trays to about 10 neighbors and everyone's office as well as all our relatives. This year I believe we're dong, between us, 25 kinds of cookies and candies. My kitchen is currently in full disaster mode, but I woudn't give it up for anything!

  9. What great Xmas traditions! We make ornaments every year for our tree. We had a fire a few years ago at my sisters house so we've had to start from scratch. I taught mine how to make a star on cardboard and paste the current years school pic and then weave colored yarn around it.

    We bake cookies for neighbors, teachers and grandparents and put them in colorful plastic containers

    It's so much fun to watch them roll out the dough and bake without me now. Even my son joins in and helps with the dipped pretzels and peppermint bark.

    Each year we make grandparents and aunts and uncles a gift. We're making snow globes again with their picture in them. It's fairly easy and takes two days.

    All you Need is

    Small round canning jar
    Felt for the bottom
    Ribbon for the lid
    A picture cut into a shape and covered with packing tape both sides.
    White glitter
    An ornament to glue on the underside of the lid
    Elmers Rubber Cement
    waterproof bonding glue

    First you glue the canning lid pieces with the bonding glue and glue the ornament to the lid let dry over night.
    Cut and glue the felt for the bottom piece.
    Next Day: Slide your pic inside the jar upside down: Remember you flip the jar over when it's ready...
    Fill with water and your white glitter

    Rubber cememt the grooves of the jar and the canning lid add a line of waterproof glue around the grooves and seal it. Once sealed Leave it right side up for 24 hours and then you can flip it over and see your masterpiece!

    We tried the recipe with the white corn syrup it didn't work water has worked best for us and we ship them to New York and Cali from the midwest. They have lasted for about two to three years.

    This has always been something great for the kids to do. We find making things means more even sometimes we do brownie recipes and soups and fill the jars up and attach the recipe on a colored card with ribbon. Something from the heart makes them feel great.And it's cheap lol.

    Happy Holidays Everyone and thanks Laura for such a great blog!!!

    My mom gave us ornaments for each year too.

  10. Our only tradition that hasn't gone the wayside is on Christmas morning I make these cinnamon orange rolls for the guys. They love them. Now that they're all grown it's too hard to hold on to the other things we used to do. Though hubs and I still go to the children's service on Christmas Eve :).

    Merry Christmas!

  11. Hi Laura~
    I love the way your family chooses new ornaments each year for each person. You can look at the ornament and recall a special memory with it. Your children will be able to enjoy these even after they are grown. Hopefully, they will continue the tradition in the future. When my nieces & nephew were little, I would get them a special one each year representing something from that year.

    I hope you have a very Merry Christmas & a Happy New Year!
    June M.
    manning_j2004 at yahoo dot com

  12. We always play a board game after dinner...and drink egg nog!

    Just Gotta Say sounds like it's right up my alley. I've added it to my must have list.

    Loved the cartoon; it was a hoot.

    Well, if a guy kisses me behind my ear, I'm totally melt! That was his technique on me!

    Tracey D
    booklover0226 at gmail dot com

  13. We have one tradition that I just love, and that is watching Christmas themed movies all day on Christmas Eve day, just my husband, my 2 boys and myself. This year though, we have my brand new daughter-in-law with us, and she is looking forward to relaxing and laughing with us as we just blow the day away snacking and sipping egg nog and hot chocolate =)
    Thank you so much for your generous giveaway! I want to read your book SO badly! It sounds just divine!
    Happy Holidays!
    Gena Robertson

  14. Oh, I'm going to have to start the red panties tradition in my house this year. :)

    Happy Holidays!

  15. Hi Laura,
    I have similar traditions to yours.The kids get to open a present on Christmas Eve.The past few years it has been the gifts from my sister that lives in another Province.
    And every year I buy a new ornament for the Christmas tree.I try to find ones with the year printed on it.

    Another one is every member in the family get s chocolate initial.Even the adults.My grandmother did this for all of us.Then my mother and now I do it too (so do my siblings) some years the nieces and nephews (grandkids) they get multiple ones.

    I hope you and your family have a safe and Happy Holiday.


  16. Hi Laura,
    Every year on Christmas Eve, we have my step-dad's side of the family over to our house for ham, chili and oyster soup (along w/cookies, cheese, etc.). My mom's side of the family used to get together for lunch on Christmas Day at one of her sister's or her home (at my grandparents home when they were both living), but since my cousins are married & have kids now, there are too many people to do that.
    Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you & your family.

    Lea Ellen {night owl in IL}

  17. I didn't know that about the red panties. Intriguing tradition. We always open one gift on Christmas Eve. For Christmas Eve dinner it's always homemade chicken noodle soup and homemade chili along with homemade cinnamon rolls for dessert. A very comforting meal to get us sleepy.

    Thanks for your post and giveaway!

    joderjo402 AT gmail DOT com

  18. My boy's are grown now, and this is their first Christmas out of the house. I still proudly display all their handmade ornaments from grade school and still put together stockings for them to open with their packages on Christmas day.

    caity_mack at yahoo dot com

  19. Only milk for Santa? We always leave sherry! And a mincepie and a little bit of cheese for Santa mouse.

  20. From red panties, new pjs, and a yearly ornament, I loved learning of your traditions, Laura. Mine involve everyone coming to my house from 7 am onward. Even I can't mess up breakfast foods, so it's my way of making up for never bringing anything to get togethers but take out. We also watch Christmas Story all day.

  21. I think your red panties tradition is going to be widely shared by all your readers Laura! Who can resist an excuse to wear them? :)

    For my family it's more the preparations for the day. I'm in charge of baking; my sis is the decorator. We all do our fair share when it's time for eating!!

    My family is Chinese, our traditions are for the Chinese (lunar) New Year. Common traditions among Chinese families are that you don't sweep the floor on CNY's day. The superstition is that you are sweeping away good luck. I reckon in this age of vacuum cleaners that this superstition is rather moot! My mum is not quite convinced tho.

  22. I so want to read this book! We have the same ornament tradition and I Love it! also everyone gets an ornament for Christmas commomorating something special from that year, or special about themselves!

  23. You guys are totally making me smile! Thanks for all the wonderful comments, for sharing your traditions (Hales--I'm so trying that!), and for all your good cheer! Keep those comments coming! You've now earned a giveaway of TWO amazon gift cards...won't take too many more comments to make it THREE! Woot!

  24. I own all your books, Laura, and they all rock!

    I love the idea of red undies on New Year's hubby might like that one too..wink wink!

    We did cookies and milk, and new jammies on Christmas eve (hey, gotta look your best for Santa even though you never know that he sees you)!

    books4me67 at ymail dot com

  25. Happy Holidays!

    My favorite family tradition is decorating cookies with the kids :)

  26. Our ornaments have meaning too. My boys love putting ornaments up from when I was their age. I also buy them an ornament each year.
    A tradition that I had on Christmas Eve was opening one gift.


  27. Weirdest thing, I tried leaving a comment but blogger wouldn't take it. Did want to let you know I never knew that red panties on new year's eve brings good luck - that is going to be my new tradition - lol! Nice post!


    (Comment from Jen Probst that didn't go through...)

  28. WHat great traditions. I have to have red undies for NYs too. So not willing to risk the consequences of not wearing them and it gives me an excise to buy sexy undies.

  29. Every year since college I have made personalized ornaments for family. Sometimes they are handpainted glass ornaments or ceramics. I've made cross-stitch and stuffed toy ornaments too. I loved the felt Gingerbread Men that I made a few years ago. Thanks for sharing your holiday traditions.

    geishasmom73 AT yahoo DOT com

  30. @L.C.--lol yes, don't risk it!

    @Stacie--aw, handmade personalized ornaments are a great gift!

    Keep those comments coming everyone! You're close to making me give away *three*!

  31. Oh, no, I'm wrong! There are 27 unique commenters, thus THREE of you will win $10 amazon Gift Cards on January 2! Woot!

  32. Being a military family, we often away for Christmas so we came up with a way to celebrate Christmas that has become our new tradition. On Christmas Eve we open presents and have a big meal and on Christmas Day we go see a movie and eat out. This has helped the sad part of being on our own for Christmas.

  33. I love your blog..and would soo love an e-copy of your book now that the best hubby in the world got me a Kindle Fire for chirstmas that I can put down.. Already got 5 books on it. I sooo love my Kindle. Shannon S.

  34. I love your blog. This book sounds great. I really want to read it.

  35. Hey, what a great giveaway! I love the cover of the book and I can't wait to start reading it! Thanks for the giveaway, and happy holidays!


  36. I thought it was just my family and the PJs tradition. My daughter has come to expect it too. So much nicer having new PJs on Christmas morning when the camera comes out

  37. Hi Laura !! Love your post lol.. I also collect ornaments from differnt locations lol Our christmas tradition is normally opening one gift the night before !! Love the cover of your new book and cant wait to read it as well !! So many books you have brought out this year !! Fantastic !!!!! thanks for the giveaway and have a wonderful new year ... with your new read panties and all !! wink wink !!


  38. Yay! Look at all the new comments! You guys rock! Enjoying reading them, guys!

  39. Great traditions. My family also does the pjs on Christmas Eve.The book sound like a good read. an't wait. Thanks for the giveaway.


  40. On Christmas Eve my family drinks hot coco and watches the Christmas Story. I love that movie.
    Then the rest of the night goes on with us begging to open gifts but being told not till Christmas day.
    You have great family traditions. I love the ornament one. I always wanted to do that. Something that the kids could look back on and remember every good memory associated with each ornament. I think I am going to start that one now.
    Red Panties on New Years? Never heard of that one. I always eat black eyed peas and collard greens on New Years.
    Thanks for the giveaway. Happy New Year to everyone!! (:


  41. I love the red panties on New Year's Eve....I plan on buying me something sexy and red to start this new tradition. Thanks and so happy that everything is going great with you.

  42. LOL All right, everyone, go get those red panties! I mean it now! You don't want to chance the consequences of going without them!!! ;)

  43. I like your ornament tradition. Our tree is filled with ornament stories too, but mostly because my mom still hangs the various ornaments we kids made when we were in school. Some are getting a little worse for wear. Do you think I should make her some new ones?

    Every year we get our dog a new stuffed toy for Christmas. He's getting quite a collection, which he drags into his crate every night to sleep with, then back out in the morning to play. All his toys are still fully stuffed & remarkably unblemished from the chewing & throwing. He's actually quite gentle with his toys.

    drainbamaged.gyzmo at

  44. I love this post-even though I'm catching it after Christmas! I think I might start that red panty tradition.

    My favorite traditions growing up were making new ornaments for the tree-even if it was a new construction paper chain or string of popcorn. Also-loved the cookie baking, it was a ritual and I even get nostalgic about the smell of those baking cookies.

    I have to say that I've fallen out of traditions as an adult. I don't have any children, so there doesn't seem to be the pull to follow any tradition to make things festive. The closest I've come is to watch The Nightmare Before Christmas annually.

    mljfoland AT hotmail DOT com

  45. I'm almost sad that Christmas is over, but I'm excited about the upcoming new year too! Happy holidays!

  46. Wish I had some fun holiday tradition to share, mine include my annual first shopping trip for the upcoming Holidays on the Saturday after Thanksgiving with my best friend. I stay at her house the weekend, visiting with her and her family. On Saturday, it's just the two of us hitting the stores in Danbury, CT. Lunch is always the buffet at Stew Leonard's and regardless of the weather, we usually sit out on the picnic tables eating it! 2010, it was so cold and wet we had to break down and eat in the car though! heh, heh

    Anywho, I like the idea of the red undies to "ring in the new year"! Me thinks I may be visiting Victoria's Secret tonight to do a little shopping! Thanks for that!

  47. Going to my in-laws on Christmas Eve for some FAB Italian eats and spending time with the family!

    barbbattaglia at yahoo dot com

  48. One of my favorite Holiday traditions is ,my Mom, my daughter & I all preparing a traditional Polish dinner for Christmas. This year, my grandsons (3&4 years old) "helped. That was 4 generations preparing dinner this year!

    Thanks for the giveaway & have a Happy New Year!

    elizabeth @ bookattict . com

  49. Hi Laura,
    Our favorite Christmas tradition is staying home each year and doing nothing but playing with our new toys/things. Our family of 7 use to spend our Christmas Day traveling to different friends and families homes and we would be exhausted for the next week from all the running plus the kids were unhappy. So we decided to cook different finger foods, deserts and breads the week of Christmas and we enjoy this food on Christmas Day so we don't have to cook and we hang out @ the house.

  50. I'm Jewish so I don't have Christmas traditions, although I do have Hannukah traditions. However, I'm also a dog trainer, so I was curious why you called your dog "cute-but-bad." Happy holidays!

  51. The ornaments on our Christmas Tree are all 'treasures'. Many made by my children when they were very young & some gifts from friends & family. They are lovingly put on the tree each year & packed away carefully after.



    1) Amber amberpreer(at)yahoo(dot)com
    2) AmyS. truebloodfan(at)rock(dot)com
    3) Regina Ross

    And aftergadget--my dog's cute-but-bad because he's a huge counter surfer, and steals my girls' stuffed animals, and loves to tear up paper, and just generally cause a ruckus! LOL