The Vosswood Nursing Center
The Vosswood Nursing Center

Life Care residents share their favorite Christmas traditions


12/22/2020
Our Amazing Residents

The holidays are full of treasured family traditions – from Christmas trees to carols and cookies – there’s something special for everyone during this holiday season.

We asked our residents around the country to share some of their favorite holiday traditions, and we received so many great responses!

“Driving around looking at Christmas lights.”

R.C., Rensselaer Care Center in Rensselaer, Indiana


“My family would go to Grandma’s house for lunch or dinner. She would make turkey or ham, cranberry sauce and minced meat pie. We would drink eggnog and open gifts Christmas Eve together.”

K.N., Hallmark Nursing Center in Denver


“My daughter was born on Christmas, so we celebrated her birthday on Christmas Eve. We would have a big Italian dinner with all kinds of fish to eat and then play a card came called 7-11.”

D.C., Life Care Center of New Port Richey, Florida


“I enjoyed going to the mall and buying gifts for the kids.”

M.M., Garden Terrace at Fort Worth, Texas

“Played baseball, sledded and had a huge gathering with friends and family whenever possible.”

P.H., Life Care Center of Sandpoint, Idaho


“Always getting ready for the Christmas tree. Baking all kinds of goodies and raisin bread (yum). Planned on get-togethers with family members. The family getting together for services on Christmas Eve. My grandmother was a widow and was always included in gatherings and a very special part of our family. She was my father’s mother.”

A.B., Life Care Center of Pueblo, Colorado


“We always broke a pinata at my parents’ house. It was full of candy for me and my cousins to share.”

S.M., Western Hills Health Care Center in Lakewood, Colorado


“When we’d decorate the tree, the whole family would come over, and we’d have so much fun. My husband would always lift up the baby to put the star on top of the tree. We would have Christmas dinner with everyone. I am thankful for my beautiful family, and I pray this virus will be gone soon.”

S.B., Life Care Center of the South Shore in Scituate, Massachusetts


“Going to church on Christmas Eve and then having the family over to eat. After presents have been opened, my daughter gets everyone involved in a game.”

P.C., Life Care Center of Hixson, Tennessee

“My family and I celebrate Hanukah, and we light up candles and make potato pancakes and eat them with applesauce during an eight-day week.”

P.L., Life Care Center of Estero, Florida


“Opening Christmas presents. I remember my son Jack asking, ‘What do you want for Christmas, Mom?’ I told him candy. I didn’t know he was going to buy the biggest box of candy I’ve ever seen!”

A.M., Life Care Center of Greeneville, Tennessee


“My mother making beef Wellington.”

J.S., Darcy Hall of Life Care in West Palm Beach, Florida


“Growing up in the Philippines, I seemed to be the only one who cared about decorating for Christmas. I still decorate our room every year. I say, ‘It’s always good to be gaudy around Christmas.’”

P.M., Western Hills Health Care Center in Lakewood, Colorado


“I enjoyed going to church on Christmas and thanking God for sending Jesus.”

J.J., Garden Terrace at Fort Worth, Texas


“We had a big meal. As a kid, I was one of seven kids, and we didn't have a lot of money. We always attended church. As an adult, I opened presents with my daughter.”

S.S., Life Care Center of Westminster, Colorado


“Family gathering at Christmas time singing, playing games and telling stories. But most of all the Puerto Rican dishes my families cooked that ‘broke da mouth.’ Being with family is a blessing.”

V.T., Ka Punawai Ola in Kapolei, Hawaii


“My daddy would make it look like Santa had come down the chimney by making marks in the black soot like Santa was here. He would drink the milk and eat the cookies and really made the grandkids very excited and happy. I really loved that about my daddy – he made it look like Santa came down and went back up the chimney.”

E.P., Life Care Center of Winter Haven, Florida

“We chopped down trees for people on our farm. My dad is 88 and still doing it.”

M.K., Rensselaer Care Center in Rensselaer, Indiana


“Mom had a certain fruit salad with marshmallows in it that she always made. Once we were old enough and moved out, we all started to make it ourselves. Santa always came the afternoon before Christmas, when we would go over to our neighbors’ house.”

M.G., Life Care Center of Seneca, Kansas


“I would let my daughter Sandy wake up super early on Christmas morning to open her presents. My husband George would always decorate the outside of our house and put up lights.”

H.M., Life Care Center of Blount County in Louisville, Tennessee

“My family, from my grandmother on down to my grandchildren, have been hanging and filling Christmas stockings. Every Christmas this has been an important tradition in our family. Checking what was in the stocking came first before opening presents. It is one we have all enjoyed and passed on to each generation.”

S.H., Mi Casa Nursing Center in Mesa, Arizona


“My favorite memory is our Christmas family breakfast, and afterward, we would gather around the Christmas tree, and I would read the Christmas story.”

D.J., Life Care Center of Greeneville, Tennessee


“Christmas dinner. For dessert, we would have cherry pie, mince pie and apple pie. Before Christmas, I would drive from Maine with my son to Massachusetts to my grandmother’s house with aunts and more family to have lobster Newberg my grandmother would make special for me. Years later, my son would make a roast beef for him and me.”

K.H., Life Care Center of the South Shore in Scituate, Massachusetts


“When [our] family of 10 is together, Ma in the kitchen cooking, Hungarian music playing all day.”

S.V., Rivergate Health Care Center in Riverview, Michigan


“We had a wonderful time at my house. I did not cook for anyone. They had to bring their own food to my house. And I am not cooking anymore!”

A.L, Garden Terrace at Fort Worth, Texas

“Christmas lasagna. My family is Italian, and it was so heavy I could barely lift the pan. We ate a lot for the holidays.”

F.C., Western Hills Health Care Center in Lakewood, Colorado


“Besides the usual celebration of gift giving, caroling and feasting, we as a family celebrated Christmas by attending midnight mass. Along with the liturgical celebration, we honored the birth of Christ by paying special homage to Him in a nativity scene with prayers and carols.  Afterward, we invited the priest and a few friends to the house for drinks and sweets.”

G.G., Garden Terrace at Houston, Texas


“Christmas consisted of my immediate family together at our home. My mother was such a good cook and never followed a recipe, so I couldn’t learn to cook just like her, but her apple dumplings were to die for!”

M.P., Life Care Center of Blount County in Louisville, Tennessee


“Cutting down a Christmas tree and taking it home and decorating it.”

L.B., Darcy Hall of Life Care in West Palm Beach, Florida


“I always enjoyed watching the children and the look on their faces when first seeing what was under the tree.”

F.P., Life Care Center of Red Bank in Chattanooga, Tennessee

“Making Christmas cookies with my husband – chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, peanut butter. My husband and I would deliver the cookies to our doctors and friends. I made over 1,000 cookies.”

K.B., Life Care Center of Estero, Florida


“My whole family gets together at my niece’s house on Christmas Eve to exchange gifts and eat Chinese food. There would be over 35 people there!”

A.L., Life Care Center of the South Shore in Scituate, Massachusetts


“Attending midnight mass, then getting perogies for a traditional Polish dinner. After that, getting to open one present before being sent off to bed so Santa could deliver his presents.”

S.F., Western Hills Health Care Center in Lakewood, Colorado


“I started life as a circus brat. My father was a clown, and my mother was a trapeze artist and star. My two older sisters did high wire or tightrope. Twelve years later, my youngest sister came along. Circus people didn’t make much money, so when Christmas came along, my dad signed up to be Santa Claus. Of course, my little sister and I went to see Santa Claus. We were both very shy, so we didn’t say much, and we went home and asked Daddy if he had a brother, and he laughed and said he did have a lost brother. Well, from then on, we always set an extra plate for Christmas dinner.”

N.L., Mi Casa Nursing Center in Mesa, Arizona


“Giving out donations to those in need.”

M.L., Life Care Center of Estero, Florida


“Daddy would wake us up at 2:30 in the morning and tell us Santa came. Always had nuts, fruit and candy.”

D.F., Rensselaer Care Center in Rensselaer, Indiana

“When wrapping presents for my children, I would use one kind of paper for each child. Their stocking paper was the same paper, so when they would get their stockings and see the paper, they would know which packages under the tree belonged to them.”

N.W., Life Care Center of Valparaiso, Indiana


“The gathering for a Christmas meal in Minnesota at the family’s house. Everyone had a special dish they had to bring, like a family potluck. I really miss those good old days. We would go snowmobiling, and it was so fun.”

J.K., Life Care Center of Winter Haven, Florida


“When my daughter was young, she would search around the house for her Christmas presents. She finally found the gifts after a while. We also liked to cook together and enjoyed our time.”

J.E, Garden Terrace at Fort Worth, Texas


“On Christmas Eve, we always went to Grandma’s house. Christmas Day, we had korf (Swedish sausage and potatoes) and opened gifts. A Piper Cub plane with a red cross used to fly over our house. My husband worked for the Arvada fire department, and we used to go door to door and hand out fruit in socks.”

N.B., Life Care Center of Westminster, Colorado


“On Christmas Day, we would place a candle in a cupcake and sing, ‘Happy Birthday’ to Jesus.”

J.T., Life Care Center of New Port Richey, Florida

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815 S. Voss Road, Houston, TX 77057

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