Traditions Are The Stuff Memories are Made Of
My mom has always been big on traditions. For each holiday there are designated dishes that must be prepared, there are decorations to put out and always, the family must be gathered together. As I kid, I loved these traditions. Come about the middle of November I would begin anticipating the Nanaimo bars, scuffles and butter tarts that I knew she would bake for Christmas (yes, it was all about the food). As an adult, I appreciate all the hard work that my mom put into making the holidays special with each of her traditions. And I still anticipate my first bite of Nanaimo bar, despite the fact that I have now taken over responsibility for preparing that delectable treat. Honestly, it would simply not be Christmas for me without each tradition created by my mom.
Now that I am a parent, I want to create these same memories for my boys. They already, at age eight and five, appreciate the traditions that each pair of grandparents offer up as well as the ones we have created in our own home.
We spend every Christmas away from home but before we leave, we celebrate together as a family of four. Our boys talk for weeks about this one day that we set aside just for us. It's a magical day from start to finish. It is filled with love, laughter and fun. I dare say, it will be what I remember most about their childhood Christmases when I am old and grey. On that day, time stops, all else ceases to exist but the four of us. There is no fighting. There is no impatience. There is no rushing from this to that. There is just Christmas music, holiday baking, the glow of the Christmas tree lights and time spent together doing what the boys choose. I am already anticipating this special day and it is only early November.
This year, we also began the annual tradition of creating a special day for each of the boys on their birthday. Instead of buying them yet another toy that they don't really need or want, we set aside a whole day to do whatever they want. When I first asked them about doing this, I expected tears and protest. I was badly mistaken. Instead they were shocked - eyes wide and chin on the floor kind of shocked. But the good kind of shock. As in, really, a whole day with you and Daddy, to do whatever I want?
My kids will not remember every toy they receive at Christmas and on birthdays but they will remember the special ways we celebrated, together, as a family of four and with our extended families.
This is an original Canada Moms Blog post.