As we prepare for the holidays, what type of family traditions do you follow? Do you spend hours baking and decorating cookies? Do you put Christmas lights on the outside of your house so Santa can find you? Do you adopt a family who is going through difficult times? Family traditions vary from family to family, but they shape who you are and how you raise your family. This week I am to share the importance of creating family traditions and at the same time, memories that will last you a lifetime.
“Family traditions old and new, what works for me may not work for you. The important thing is we work together to make memories that will last forever.” Stacy Coles
For the past 13 years, the month of December has been extremely difficult for me. I grew up with a mom who created a lot family traditions around the holidays. She would spend her Saturdays taking us to our bowling league and then to ballet and tap lessons. The rest of the day was spent baking cookies. She would have Tupperware containers full of her delicious and beautiful creations. From corn flake wreaths to Mexican wedding cakes, she had so many varieties that when she did allow us to have one, it would take me forever to decide which one! My personal favorite was her sugar cookies. I loved to watch her roll out the dough, cut reindeer, stockings, stars and trees (to name a few), bake them to a perfect golden brown and set them out to cool. She would make several bowls of brightly colored icing and sit and “paint” the cookies and add sprinkles, red hots and little silver balls. On the top of the stockings, she would write our names so we knew those were our cookies and so one else could eat them! Our friends used to say that they were too pretty to eat, and every December several friends and family members will talk about her famous sugar cookies. She also was quite famous for her fudge. In 1953, she purchased the See Candy Company fudge recipe and would share it with no one. I have it now and we enjoy making it and sharing it with friends and family.
“Most seasonings are based on family tradition.” Wolfgang Puck
Research sows that traditions are important in building strong family relationships between generations. Why are they so important? For most of us, family is the most important part of a person’s life. Families are not perfect, but family traditions create memories that last a lifetime.
They Bring Families Together
Life is about creating memories and traditions help us realize what is truly important. It stimulates conversation about past Christmases and lets us relive happy times in our lives. They bring generations together and allow the older generation to teach the younger generation family values and beliefs.
They Create Memories
We all know that life is short. From year to year, our family dynamic changes. We lose some members and gain some new. The memories that are created by family traditions help keep those we have lost close in our hearts and memories.
They Give Us Something To Look Forward To
Family traditions shape who we are and give us something to look forward to. Whether it’s decorating sugar cookies, gathering around the Christmas tree on Christmas Eve to drink egg nog and open just one package (and it’s usually pajamas), traditions bring us together to share our love and happiness during the holidays.
What are you family traditions? Are there a few you’d like to start? It is never too late! Make this Christmas a holiday season to create memories that your family will carry with them forever.
“Every heart that has a beat strongly and cheerfully has left a hopeful impulse behind it in the world, and bettered the tradition of mankind.” Robert Louis Stevenson
Have a blessed week!