This year more than ever before, I’m aware of our family’s Christmas traditions. Both kids are grown and living away, but will happily be home for Christmas. Each time I talk with either one of them I am reminded of the little details that are important to them. The decorations, the Christmas music, the coffee cake served after opening presents; all the things we’ve done over the years that have become important parts of their memories. As a parent I’m reminded of the responsibility I have to make sure our kids enjoy, participate and look forward to the wonderful family moments. More often than not it’s the little things that are turned into the sweetest memories.
Glass globe ornaments collected and received as gifts over the years always find a place in my biggest bowl. The red, white and blue starred one is a particular favorite as it was given to me Christmas 2001, the first Christmas after 9/11.
My fellow blogger at Ciao Dominica wrote of traditions the other day and then referred to a blogger friend of hers, at From the House of Edward, who also shared a story of the importance of family traditions. Click on their links to enjoy their stories. It’s fun to read about what other families do for the holidays and it sometimes gives us an idea of traditions that might become one of our own.
Our family traditions seem quite simple but are obviously a big part of our holiday memories. Around here I’m pretty sure Christmas music begins sometime right after our Thanksgiving meal. Everybody has their favorites and they often trade CD’s to add to each others collections. The radios in the cars are set to the 24/7 Christmas music stations.
Somebody always has to dress up a dog or two, who are never too happy about it but put up with our silly behavior.
The kids plan which Christmas movies will be required watching. A Christmas Story, Elf, Home Alone, The Santa Clause, The Holiday and Love Actually are always at the top of their lists. I love that they have this fun little tradition they've created and that they look forward to spending time with one another.
Presents are talked about and hoped for, of course, favorite foods are expected, but most of all we just like being together; laughing, looking at our favorite ornaments and treasures. Our snow village is put out with the puffy pretend snow and we remember where each house sits, where Santa will be and where each of the little skiers should be placed.
The tree is decorated with ornaments collected for many years. My mother gave me one each year and I have continued that tradition with my own children. Too many to count; it’s almost time for them to take them into their own homes. Maybe next year.
My very favorite ornament is this one that my mother and father got somewhere early in their marriage. It’s at least 65 years old and every year when I carefully unwrap it I think of them and how young they were with their lives, dreams and hopes ahead of them. I’d love to hear of your family’s traditions. Leave me a comment.