Family Traditions That Are FUN
If you're like my family, you have special traditions. Things that are quirky and odd and eclectic and to many outsiders... just a bit weird. But they are unique and they represent something unduplicatable (word I thought I made up) by any other family or group or club. Something that is shared with only your closest family and friends.
Merriam-Webster puts it like this... Tradition: “an inherited, established, or customary pattern of thought, action, or behavior”.
For instance, we love to watch a crazy movie with Dana Carvey... the “Master of Disguise"!
Possibly one of the stupidist and lowest budget films ever released. For some reason, we watched with our young kids (ages 4-7) and they LOVED IT. So we watched it again and again and well... as they got older, we kept watching it together. Now the kids have their boyfriends and cousins and neighbors all watch it with us too. It’s a TRADITION! It serves no real point, other than to bind us all together and provide us with endless inside jokes... ( am I not turtlely enough for the turtle club?)
At Christmas time, we like to eat a family recipe from my mom of swiss cheese fondue and volunteer down at the Nashville Rescue Mission. For New Years Eve we usually go to a local Waffle House to celebrate and call each other wherever we are at exactly the stroke of midnight, while gorging on waffles, eggs, bacon and hash browns... it’s so uncool, it’s cool
For birthdays, my mom (72 years young) will sing an ear-splitting shriek of a song—roughly resembling a falsetto asian version of the traditional “Happee Burstday tu U” to every member of our family. Odd, but hilarious. On a phone connection, it’s awesome to hear!
For coming of age events like turning 16 or graduating from high school, we take a special parent and child road trip. For Jessica’s 16th, we surprised her by flying unannounced to Boston in February to explore the city and the New England coastline, when Bethany hit her special date... we drove her and her best friend to Siesta Key Fla., and some beach front celebrating. Caleb I’m sure, is already seriously considering his options for his special time when he turns 16 in a couple of years.
For a fun Summer break.. we like to go to “Holiday World” in Santa Claus, IN.
We've been going there for years, since the kids were very small (3-5 years old) and it’s become our family's favorite place to ride the rides and slide the slides. We eat pizza and hot dogs, ice cream and too much soda as we risk sunburn and nausea all day in the hot summer sun of southern Indiana. It’s crazy fun and a bit odd. But we have a history of doing it as a family. A TRADITION! It provides us with an anchor, that no matter where we live, or what we’re doing, we still have a commitment to family. To being with each other and in sharing life and it’s simple or extravagant pleasures together.
What are some of your family traditions?
Maybe it’s time to consider making some new ones this year... ? Whatever your situation is, consider carefully what might be a realistic fun thing you can do with your family, year after year. Then do it. Surprise them! Do it for the fun of it, not for the educational or spiritual value it might bring. Just do it for the sheer joy of life, of living and of being together as a family. Those moments are rare, and precious. A time to reconnect and refocus all of your attention back to family... a wise investment of your time and money! When you find your families special “something", do it again and again... let become your own TRADITION!
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