Tuesday, December 6, 2011

traditions

Most of us probably have fond or amusing memories of family traditions from our childhood, particularly those associated with our holiday celebrations.  Some traditions are elaborate affairs, but they don't have to be.  Simple activities repeated year after year can be just as special.  Have you ever done something seemingly insignificant, then had your kids ask the next year, "Are we going to do such-and-such again this year?"  It's amazing how they remember.

One of our family's favorite Christmas traditions is making gingerbread houses with our Florida cousins (my sister's family).  We typically only see them once or twice each year, with one of those visits being near the Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday.  Several years ago, we made some "gingerbread" houses with graham crackers, icing, and candy, just for the sake of making them, not with starting any kind of tradition in mind.  However, my older children had such a strong association between that event and my fun sister who plays icing with them (not me, man!) that they begged for it the next year.  It has been a regular activity ever since, now buying gingerbread kits and making some more official-looking houses, and this year, a train.

In my mind, this is a really easy tradition, because I'm a hero for letting my kids eat tons of candy, and I just run around taking lots of pictures.  My AWESOME sister may think it's a little more work (although knowing her, I doubt it) since she's the one actually helping all the children decorate and putting the finished pieces together.  But we all think it's special and SO MUCH FUN!

Does your family have special Christmas traditions?  Could this be the year to start something new?

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