LIVE

"They are creating their own traditions at their new home," an insider tells PEOPLE

By Stephanie Petit
December 24, 2020 01:46 PM
Advertisement
Meghan Markle Prince Harry Duke Duchess of Sussex
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
| Credit: Toby Melville - WPA Pool/Getty

Meghan Markle and Prince Harry are celebrating their first Christmas in America.

After spending 2017 and 2018 with Queen Elizabeth and the rest of the royal family at Sandringham, Meghan and Harry spent their first Christmas with 1-year-old son Archie last year with some "family time" during a six-week break towards the end of the year in Canada.

This year marks their first time the family of three is celebrating in California, where the couple purchased a home in Monecito — about 100 miles north of Los Angeles, Meghan's hometown — over the summer.

"It's Harry's second Christmas away from England, and Meghan wants to make sure it's special for everyone," an insider tells PEOPLE. "They are creating their own traditions at their new home."

After trick-or-treating with Archie for Halloween and celebrating Thanksgiving at home with Meghan's mom, Doria Ragland, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex have prepped for the holiday season by decorating for Christmas.

"They both love Christmas and have been decorating with Archie," a source previously told PEOPLE.

Meghan Harry Christmas card
The Sussex family Christmas card 2020
| Credit: The Duke and Duchess of Sussex

Meghan, 39, and Prince Harry, 36, also set out earlier this month to find the perfect Christmas tree. During their low-key trip to the unnamed tree barn, the couple seemed to go mostly undetected except for one little boy who mistakenly approached Harry, thinking he worked there.

“Meghan and Prince Harry came into my work today and we sold them their Christmas Tree,” said Twitter user @imaJaaaaaames.

"We had our lot empty when they got there - their agent promoted them a good time to come instead of us shutting it down. There was one family in there and their stoked little son ran through trees up to Harry and asked if he worked here not knowing who that is," the worker explained.

Meghan's mom will likely join the trio for Christmas as well.

Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, holding their son Archie
Meghan Markle, Prince Harry and Archie
| Credit: Henk Kruger/AP/Shutterstock

Amid stepping down from their senior roles within the royal family earlier this year, the couple moved to California in March, staying in Los Angeles until purchasing their new home. The nine-bedroom mansion, purchased for a reported $14 million, is the family's "permanent home," a source previously told PEOPLE.

"Ever since Archie arrived, everything has been so turbulent, and many things have been up in the air," the insider said. "It has not been easy, necessarily. For the first time in a long time, they have a clear focus."

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex
Meghan Markle and Prince Harry
| Credit: PA Images

On Wednesday, Meghan and Harry shared their family Christmas card, which is an illustration of a photo taken by Meghan's mom. Starring front and center is the couple's 19-month-old son Archie (who has clearly inherited dad Harry's red hair!) and their two adorable dogs, Pula and Guy.

Can't get enough of PEOPLE's Royals coverage? Sign up for our free Royals newsletter to get the latest updates on Kate Middleton, Meghan Markle and more!

"Wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year," the card states.

“The original photo of the family was taken at their home earlier this month by The Duchess’s mother," a spokesperson for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex said. "The small Christmas tree, including the homemade ornaments and other decorations, were selected by Archie, and the tree will be replanted after the holidays.”