Christmas is one of the most wonderful times of the year on soap operas, allowing for heartwarming family moments and holiday miracles to be sprinkled in with the usual kidnappings, reincarnations, love triangles, and other dramatic happenings that fans see play out on their screens each day. And Christmas is also one of the most wonderful times of the year for many of the actors who star on shows like General Hospital, Days of our Lives, The Young and the Restless, and The Bold and the Beautiful.
With the holidays just around the corner, Soap Central called on Santa and his elves (i.e. the shows' PR departments, which are just as magical, right?!) to help round up answers from your favorite stars to this holly and jolly question: "What are your favorite holiday traditions?" So, grab a cup of cocoa and read on for all of their heartwarming answers -- some of which may surprise you!
Darin Brooks (Wyatt Spencer, The Bold and the Beautiful; ex-Max Brady, Days of our Lives)
"Our favorite holiday tradition is setting up the Christmas wreath, decorations, and stockings on the mantel of the fireplace in our living room. And on Christmas morning, having our coffee, opening our presents, and making our famous breakfast potatoes and egg bake feast. I make the potatoes and Kelly [ex-Mackenzie Browning, The Young and the Restless] makes the egg bake."
Wes Ramsey (Peter August, General Hospital; ex-Owen, DAYS; ex-Sam Spencer, Guiding Light)
"Chopping wood and building fires if I'm back home with my parents. Watching Elf with Laura Wright [Carly Corinthos, GH]. Watching A Christmas Carol with George C. Scott."
Melissa Ordway (Abby Newman, The Young and the Restless)
"We always bake homemade Christmas sugar cookies and decorate them with homemade icing. They are so good! We go to church on Christmas Eve, go to a nice dinner, come home and open one present, and then the girls spread reindeer dust on the driveway for the reindeer and they leave cookies and milk for Santa."
One of the sweetest traditions? Baking holiday treats! 🍪 What is your favorite thing to make this time of year? Click here to try @MelissaOrdway's sugar cookie recipe: https://t.co/cS0ennkDy2 pic.twitter.com/WW0L270ZOC- Young and Restless (@YandR_CBS) December 15, 2020
Katrina Bowden (Florence Fulton, The Bold and the Beautiful)
"Christmas crackers at Christmas dinner. My dad is British, and we always did Christmas Crackers. I still continue the tradition with my family and friends."
Amanda Baker (ex-Babe Carey, All My Children)
"My favorite holiday tradition is watching Christmas Vacation with my family. It's by far our favorite Christmas movie. We've all seen it so many times we know just about every line in the movie!"
Michelle Stafford (Phyllis Summers, Y&R; ex-Nina Reeves, GH)
"All the family over. And I like my family!! So, it's a good thing."
John McCook (Eric Forrester, B&B)
"My favorite part of the holidays is Christmas Day, surrounded by my family, opening presents, laughing, and feeling the love."
Nathin Butler (ex-Dr. Ewen Keenan, GH)
"One of our favorite holiday traditions is to sit around the fire and play and sing songs on the guitar and piano while the kids dance. It can get a little crazy if I am totally honest!"
Jordi Vilasuso (Rey Rosales, Y&R; ex-Dario Hernandez, DAYS; ex-Griffin Castillo, AMC; ex-Tony Santos, GL)
"Our Elf on the Shelf game is serious. Super excited to see our little ones wake up and see where the elf will appear this year!"
Matthew Atkinson (Thomas Forrester, B&B)
"I just love Christmas so much, and I'm so into celebrating Christmas. I love putting up the lights, I love listening to the music. Anytime that you can go to a tree lighting ceremony or something like that, it's always a magical experience. So when you set up the tree and you set up the lights and you put on some music and you show it off for the first time, especially if you have a house and you've strung some lights up outside, I think the experience of everyone coming together and putting up the decorations and having fun with that -- those are some of the most unforgettable moments. So, I guess I'd say setting up the tree and decorations!"
Jacqueline MacInnes Wood (Steffy Forrester, B&B)
"Getting together with the family, cooking, putting on a good Christmas movie, and drinking eggnog."
Lauren Roman (ex-Laura Kirk, AMC)
"Baking Christmas cookies with my mom -- especially Snickerdoodles!"
Brytni Sarpy (Elena Dawson, Y&R; ex-Valerie Spencer, GH)
"Food. Literally anything involving food. Cooking it, eating it, eating more of it. I love having gumbo, sweet potato pies, mac n' cheese, and greens during the holidays."
Annika Noelle (Hope Logan, B&B)
"My all-time favorite tradition is readying the house for Santa, hanging stockings, setting out cookies and carrots for Santa and the reindeer, and trimming the Christmas tree. The whole family gets involved. And, if there is snow, I always make a snowman."
Christian LeBlanc (Michael Baldwin, Y&R)
"In the country along the Mississippi above New Orleans where I grew up, it's the custom to build elaborate bonfires on the levee and burn them on Christmas Eve to light the way for Papa Noel. Growing up, I have this vivid memory of dancing silhouettes backlit by the bright flames."
TC Warner (ex-Kelsey Jefferson, AMC)
"Doing the Christmas walk on Canyon Road in Santa Fe and then midnight mass on Christmas Eve."
Sean Dominic (Nate Hastings, Y&R)
"Honestly it's just getting to be around most of the family. Enjoying good food, good drink, and good conversations. So many memories to laugh to."
Hunter King (Summer Newman, Y&R)
"My favorite holiday activities include staying in our PJs all day on Christmas and sometimes going out for Chinese food later at night. We've only missed a few years of Chinese food on Christmas, but it's always one of my favorite Christmas Day traditions."
Donny Boaz (Chance Chancellor, Y&R)
"My favorite holiday traditions with my loved ones consist of: family, food, and football. We get to see family, eat good food, and watch football. I love it."
Courtney Hope (Sally Spectra, Y&R/B&B)
"I have recently over the years really gotten into Elf on the Shelf. I didn't really know what it was growing up, and my best friend told me about it years ago. Her son is my godson, and that's been something that has been really cool to see. Every day, she puts the elf somewhere new, and it's so creative and so fun. That's definitely something that I want to carry over some day. And the other thing, it's not really a tradition, but I just absolutely love being around family. My family is so spread out over the U.S., and even the world, and I just really, really enjoy everyone coming together. My family has always done a Christmas Day party. Normally it's in Michigan, because that's where everyone is from, and everyone goes back, and we go to my aunt's house. We play games and [play] White Elephant, where everyone is passing their gifts around. That was kind of our family tradition, and I really love that. It's gotten a little harder as people get older, because they're having families and it's harder for all of them to travel back -- especially this year, with COVID, we're not going to be together. So, it's a tradition that is really, really meaningful to me, especially now. I see the importance of how wonderful that is."
What do you think about the traditions that the above soap opera stars love to celebrate and honor each holiday season? What are YOUR favorite holiday traditions? We want to hear from you -- and there are many ways you can share your thoughts.