Christmas Traditions: The Nutcracker

During Christmas, my family has many traditions.  We enjoy German advent calendars (little candies every day to count down to Christmas), watching The Muppet Christmas Carol and The Grinch, and making cookies.  The Hubby and I have our own tradition; every year we go shopping for a Christmas ornament.  My favorite tradition:  going to see The Nutcracker. 

Nutcracker

My parents took my brother and me to see it every year since I was about 5 until they divorced a decade later.  After that I didn't go to a live ballet--too emotionally draining for me.  Then about 5 years ago, The Hubby took me, and I've been obsessed again ever since.

Why do I love it so much?  I just adore the music.  I listen to the music all year (seriously!), and around Christmas, I love to see the ballet live.  Occasionally, we can't make it to a live ballet, so I watch my favorite version: George Balanchine's with Maculay Caulkin (dirt cheap right now at $3.75)

This year, we will be going to see the live ballet: my mother, brother, sister-in-law, and myself.  I cannot wait!!!  We are going to see the one by The Lexington Ballet at the Lexington Opera House.  Not only are we honoring our past family tradition, we are supporting the local ballet.

What are some of your family Christmas traditions?  What's your favorite?