For every person there are holiday memories that stand out. They evoke the holiday spirit. They connect with a memory of sharing the holiday’s with loved ones. These traditions transport us to another time. They connect us with our ancestors and give us a better sense of ourselves and whole we are as a community.
Whatever holiday you celebrate, the tradition that goes with it is part of what makes you unique. When you remember Grandma’s baking or singing Carol’s with your siblings. When you think about holiday dinners with family, lighting the Menorah candles or Christmas tree, these are what make the holiday special.
These tasks might have seemed arduous and old fashioned as teenager or young adult. But now that I have children I realize the importance of continuing these traditions. Doing these things with my kids connects them to my father, who they never really got to know. It reminds me of my grandmother, who I miss. It creates a picture of people who I never met in person but heard stories of. Tradition gives color and personality to people of years past and bring to life in modern times people who existed only in photographs.
In our house we string holiday cards. Each card tells a story of a people who might be in our lives anymore. They may have been a co-worker, a relative that has passed, a friend we have lost touch with. But each year we string cards and recall these people and that time in our life.
Now with the invention of e-cards and photo cards. I don’t get many handwritten ones
as I use to. This makes me treasure this tradition all the more. Mostly, this tradition was started by my dad and every year I think of him and my childhood Christmas’s.
Take a moment to examine your holiday traditions. Remember why they are traditions and who made them that way. Create a tradition of your own this year so your children’s children can remember doing that activity with you.