Celebrate with a Night Around the Christmas Tree

An informal tradition that we have in our family is to spend a night around the Christmas tree. I bring in some hot cocoa along with some other treats and snacks and we hang out as a family! Sometimes we make our final requests known to everyone just in case we left something off our lists, but for the most part, it’s just to spend time together.

  • Acacia Brie Cheese Cutting Board & Tools Set By Toscana Shop Now

What makes these nights super special is really just some hot cocoa and good conversation. We have a famous hot cocoa recipe that you can find below.

  • Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven By Tramontina Shop Now

I just make it on the stove and then pour it into a beverage server like this one from Frieling. It’s so perfect to keep it warm all night long.

  • Platinum Beverage Server By Frieling Shop Now

Destiny’s Hot Cocoa Recipe

This hot cocoa is our favorite hot cocoa recipe! We make it in a Dutch oven on the stove and then pour it into a beverage server or carafe to keep it warm.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 10 minutes
Total Time 15 minutes
Servings 6
Calories 210 kcal


  • 0.5 cups sugar
  • 0.25 cups unsweetened cocoa
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 cups heavy cream or milk (1 qt.)
  • 0.75 tsp vanilla extract
  • 0.5 tsp cinnamon
  • 0.3 cups hot water


  • Mix sugar, cocoa and salt in medium saucepan; stir in water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly; boil and stir 2 minutes
  • Add milk; stir and heat until hot. Do not boil.
  • Remove from heat; add vanilla. Beat with whisk until foamy.
  • *Adapted from Hershey’s Hot Cocoa Recipe


Serving: 1gCalories: 210kcalCarbohydrates: 19gProtein: 1.5gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 9.5gCholesterol: 55mgSodium: 16mgFiber: 1gSugar: 17g

But we also might throw on a Christmas movie or two. We love all the new movies like Christmas Chronicles, but enjoy classics like Home Alone and Elf too!

These fantastic mugs are perfect for a night like this. tag’s Hand Warmer Mugs fit perfectly around your hands for a nice warm mug hug! It was our first time using them this year, but I see them being such a great hit. If you are a mug lover, add these to your collection!

  • Teak Serving Tray By Lipper International Shop Now

This year, we also added this Gratitude Jar (one of Oprah’s Favorite Things!). It’s a super simple way to keep our gratitude and thankfulness up, not just around Christmas, but really year-round.

  • Gratitude Jar By Gratitude Glass Jars Shop Now

All you do is write a small note of gratitude or what you’re thankful for and once you’re done you toss it in the jar.

On nights like this, we like to read them together. It’s really special! They also have a Christmas Wishes Jar in case you want to make your own Christmas tradition.

  • Christmas Wishes Jar By Gratitude Glass Jars Shop Now

If you are looking to have your own night around the Christmas tree, here are some other ideas that just might make it even more fun:

  • Christmas Bingo
  • Wrapping Gifts
  • Decorating the Christmas tree
  • Popcorn garlands
  • Paper garlands crafts
  • Name a Christmas Song game
  • Sing Christmas carols together