The holidays are a wonderful time of year beloved for their magic and merriment. However, you may feel differently if you are grieving the loss of someone special, especially if this is your first holiday season without them. 

At Eterneva, we believe in bringing brightness and meaning to loss. Our mission is to help people keep the stories of their loved ones alive all year round. Therefore, we are sharing 13 meaningful ways to honor your departed loved one this holiday season

Take a look. Who knows, you might just discover some new traditions that you and your kin will love! 

A family decorating a Christmas tree.

13 Traditions to Honor Your Loved One’s Memory

The thought of celebrating the most wonderful time of year can seem daunting, if not impossible, after losing someone dear to you. We hope that some of the activities on this list bring you peace and perhaps even a bit of joy this holiday season. 

1. Make a charitable donation in their honor. Identify a cause that was important to your loved one. Giving a gift in their name is a wonderful way to honor their memory and spread kindness. 

2. Light a candle. An ember shining brightly provides warmth and light, emulating your loved one’s spirit. Orchestrate a candle lighting ceremony with your whole family or simply place a candle in your window. Accompanying it with a portrait of your loved one is always a nice touch. 

Person holding a lit winter themed candle.

3. Watch their favorite holiday movie. From the Hallmark channel to family classics, there was undoubtedly a movie your loved one couldn’t wait to watch this time of year! Cozy up with a cup of cocoa and some caramel corn and enjoy the show while feeling close to them. 

4. Make a special ornament. Whether the ornament represents something they loved or has their name etched on it, hanging it in a prominent place on the tree can spark positive memories of them. 

5. Write a letter to your loved one. Writing can be a very powerful form of therapy. It gives structure and organization to your thoughts, and is a wonderful way to not only express emotions, but reflect on the positive impact your loved one has had on your life. For inspiration, check out this amazing love letter from Eterneva customer Natalie to her sweet little dog, Princeton. 

Child drawing next to Christmas tree.

6. Build a playlist. The more music, the merrier! Making a Spotify playlist is a great way to keep everyone rockin’ around the Christmas tree while creating an opportunity to include your departed loved one’s favorite song.  

7. Celebrate their life with a diamond. Cremation jewelry is rising in popularity as people search for meaningful ways to commemorate their loved ones. Creating a memorial diamond from your loved one’s ashes or hair is a remarkable way to honor their memory and keep them close to your heart. 

Blue diamond necklace surrounded by pinecones and pine needles.

8. Carry on their favorite holiday tradition. Perhaps your loved one was all about decorating sugar cookies, or building gingerbread houses. Maybe they always dressed up like Santa Claus or insisted everyone take a family photo in front of the fireplace. Whatever tradition they loved, keep it going! 

9. Make a wreath for them. You can make a wreath from scratch, or many craft stores have pre-made wreaths that you can decorate yourself. Ornament yours with your loved one’s favorite colors, trinkets that represent them, and an angel. It will be such a welcome sight on your front door! 

10. Do an act of kindness in their honor. Acts of kindness—even small ones—go a long way in brightening someone’s day, including your own! Did your loved one enjoy Starbucks? Set up shop and buy a cup of coffee for everyone one morning. Or, perhaps they were an animal lover. Volunteer at your local animal shelter and know your loved one is proud of you. 

Woman drinking hot chocolate outside during winter.

11. Visit their favorite spot. Spending time somewhere that held significance to your loved one is a great way to feel connected to them. You can talk to them here or simply sit quietly and reminisce. 

12. Set a place at the table for them. Arranging a table setting for your loved one at Thanksgiving, Christmas dinner, or other meals is a wonderful way to acknowledge how much their presence meant to you. You might also consider adding a photograph and a card with their name on it.

13. Make an advent calendar. Count down to Christmas with your loved one! Starting on December 1, take turns writing down a positive memory of your loved one each night until December 25. On Christmas Day, read out loud what everyone wrote so you can share stories of your loved one. 

Make Meaning this Holiday Season 

While reading through this list of proposed memorial activities, it’s important to remember that making new memories does not erase old memories. In fact, establishing new traditions can be healing for individuals who are grieving. 

On behalf of all of us at Eterneva, we’re here for you. If you think the holidays might be a good time for you to begin your diamond journey, please connect with us. We would be honored to help your loved one shine bright again!