Traditions are an important part of many holidays, and each family has their own unique foods to share, games to play, or places to celebrate. Here are some unique holiday celebrations that happen in the homes of Dot employees across the country.

Amanda Barry, Customer Service Representative – Key Account, Dot Foods Mt. Sterling

“My family decided that they get burnt out on the traditional Thanksgiving food, so we now do a shrimp boil every Black Friday night. It is delicious and everyone has so much fun just digging in!”

Caleb Garrison, Warehouse Lost & Found, Dot Foods Oklahoma

“Every Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year, my family celebrates the ones we have in our life, as well as the ones we have lost. Not only family, but dear friends or the people that have impacted our life. We try to keep them in our thoughts and hearts through every holiday we can. This is one thing I believe gets overlooked in holidays—the people that make the holidays worth having. Not the food or gifts, but the family and friends who continue to be there for one another. There have been many family members I have lost in the past who I don’t want to be forgotten. [This tradition] also means the family I still have now will not be forgotten in the future.”

Melissa Kirkham, Dispatch Coordinator, Dot Foods Mt. Sterling

“Most families have an elf on the shelf for their young children. Instead, my family had a gnome in a tree. While my father was in the military, he was stationed in Germany. Gnomes are a common Christmas decoration over there, so he whittled his own and brought it home. Ever since I was a kid, we would hide the gnome in the tree and the first person to find it got to pick the first candy cane for that day. As I got older, we stopped hunting for the gnome to get candy canes, but we still get him out every Christmas to hang out in the tree and enjoy the holiday season.”

Parker Schenk, Associate District Sales Manager, Dot Foods St. Louis

On Christmas Eve, Parker, his three siblings, and his dad wake up at 5 a.m. and head to The Hill, the Italian neighborhood in St. Louis. They split into two groups—one to the bakery and the other to the deli. They spend over an hour waiting to pick up and pay for their ingredients. 

“On Christmas morning, we wake up and, before we open gifts, we spend an hour making six amazing quiches from the items we picked up at The Hill the day prior,” Schenk said. “It makes for an amazing Christmas morning brunch along with a couple mimosas.”