There is a certain stability when it comes to the routines of life…..AND holiday’s, as special as they are, bring about a warmth of tradition. With my children being still fairly young I thought the little ways I created magical moments throughout the year went unnoticed. However, I found out quite quickly, after having a non-traditional Thanksgiving, that my little people were rather disheartened. Somehow in their world I have unconsciously created an expectation of what a certain holiday should look, taste, smell and be.
Without fully aware of their downhearted feelings yet, I had already planned for a Thanksgiving meal experience to happen, after-the-fact. I am a traditionalist at heart, and as the seasons change, the holidays that approach begin a fresh new way for magical moments to happen.
For me it has to do with the smells that usher in fall, as the harvest is being brought in by farmers who labored endlessly throughout the summer. My taste buds seem to come alive with ‘All Things Thanksgiving, and the brilliant colors of food displaying the table.
‘Eat the rainbow takes on a whole new meaning this day!’
Of course my children are no less unfamiliar with the seasons changing, and the foods that accompany the ushering in of winter. Their faces were ecstatic when they realized that Thanksgiving was to take place later than usual, and their hearts could no longer desire the absence of a forgotten tradition.
I shall say it pleased me to know that ALL my efforts each holiday were never in vain.
However complicated or simplistic each holiday is in your family, know that children need traditions, it’s part of the rhythm of life. Children are simple in nature and need nothing more than the same story read to them, or a favorite dessert made. It almost becomes second nature to who they are when they anticipate a certain season or holiday moment. Yet, forego that ritualistic rhythm and their hearts surely notice what was missed.
Without realizing I created traditions in my children’s hearts that are now part of what makes our family unique.
So each year I try to fulfill rituals that began the moment they were born……..
A Few Family Traditions That Are Eagerly Anticipated Now:
- Before Thanksgiving or During, we read Squanto & the Miracle of Thanksgiving by Eric Metaxas
- Pretty Tablecloths, Special Dishes and Candles Adorn the Table
- Watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, Snuggled on the Couch
- Advent Calendars are Great for Counting down to Christmas
- Chocolate Coins are Hidden in Shoes the Night of December 5th, in Remembrance of St. Nicholas
~Some traditions are easier to pursue when children are little, and others we have added as our children’s ages have become more aware of certain celebrations.
Finding traditions that your family enjoys make for magical moments happening throughout the year. It’s a created expectation without even realizing that a tradition has been generated in the hearts of our ‘little ones.’
Find What Works….