Traditions are, without a doubt, the primary touchstones of a family history. Creating Holiday traditions with your new family has to be a conscious, intentional decision to follow through on making the holidays special for your kids, no matter how young they are. Whenever I think of my own childhood, the first things I always think of are the traditions my parents maintained as I grew up.
Listening to my dad reading a Christmas Carol every night for the week before Christmas.
Having a campout in the living room (tent and all) the night before Thanksgiving.
Seeing the Happy Birthday sign draped across the mantle the morning of each family member’s birthday.
Smelling the Irish soda bread baking early in the morning of St. Patrick’s Day.
These are the memories I cherish and the moments I share whenever I talk about my family or childhood. They are also the ones that make me smile when I’m missing my family the most.
Why Are Traditions So Important?
In a world that is constantly racing to reinvent itself, traditions are the things that can be counted on. The things that make someone feel safe and secure with their family and loved ones. Without traditions, many people can feel lost and unsure of themselves when it comes to big moments. Traditions help make the special moments in life a true treasure to hang onto.
They are so important to my kids, that we have started our own tradition of adding a new tradition each holiday season. Confusing, I know. But my kids love it. Whenever we try or do something new and they really like it, I eventually get asked, “Can we make this a tradition every year?” It makes me feel good that they crave these repeatable, reliable moments with their family each year and it reminds me how important it is to have them on a regular basis for my kids.
When Should You Start Traditions?
I began to carry on the traditions of my childhood as soon as my oldest was born. She was only six weeks old on her first Christmas, but that wasn’t a reason for me to delay creating those special touchstones. I played the music, drove her around to see Christmas lights, watched the movies and read the stories. Many people might say, “Why bother? She’s so young it doesn’t matter.”
But it mattered to me.
Today, when we put up our Christmas tree or read a special book, my kids tend to ask questions like, “How long have we been doing this?” And I can say with a smile, “For as long as you’ve been alive.” The wonder in their face at that moment is worth the effort. Trust me.
Another reason I started traditions with my kids so young was to train myself to follow through on them. I will confess that there have been a couple of traditions that I didn’t start at the beginning and all these years later I still haven’t made them a piece of our holiday routine. My oldest is ten now so you could say that I’m more than a little behind on it.
There will come a time when my children have grown and they move out of the house and the traditions that we have this year will be replaced with new ones and melded with others. That will be a time that will, truthfully, make me a little sad. But I’m also excited to see what traditions my children carry on in their own families.
Need to simplify the holidays? Here you go.
I would like opinions about how you ladies manage the holidays? My parents are divorced, my husband’s parents are divorced and we have divorced grandparents yet they all expect us to fit them in and usually they want us to see them on the actual holiday. It’s really hard for me to enjoy the day because it stresses me out so much trying to make everyone happy. I feel like my husband and I should be able to start our own traditions with our son & for others to be more understanding. Thoughts?
So every christmas my husband and I have the same argument. (This is our 3rd christmas with children) he always expects us to do presents in HIS childhood tradition. I’ve tried to compromise a little but when I put my foot down and try to get some of my own traditions in or even start our very own he acts all butt hurt. It makes the holidays no fun for me.
Anyone have to travel to spend holidays with your family? We usually spend few days before and Christmas Day with one family and then few days around New Years with other family. We are thinking of trying Christmas Day at our own house since they are getting bigger. Want to start our own traditions. Wondering what others do.
I know it’s a little ways out, but my SO and I have never been big fans of Halloween. Now that we have a 7m old we want to start traditions for all holidays. What are some traditions you do with your family for Halloween?
The holidays are around the corner and I would like to start a tradition with my son involving helping/giving to those who are less fortunate. He is two years old but is very understanding. We are far from rich but I grew up not having much and I want him to learn the importance of helping others and being humble. What are some ideas or things some of you ladies do with your LO?
“First Holiday Season with a baby (7mo) – How did you celebrate for the first time? Any traditions or things that you recommend that we do or start? I’ve already ordered an ornament with her birth details on it.”
Ok ladies I would like to hear anything you girls did in order to create lasting memories for your children or any special traditions or gifts I could do with/for my baby boy. I bought him a beautiful book called “love you forever” where I will dedicate so he can have it the rest of his life. Any ideas?! Thanks in advance and happy holidays.
Holidays are SOOOOOO MUCH HARDER now that LO is here!! Having to divide every holiday between each family! And it doesn’t help the SO’s family are split up so we have to go to 4 different places on each holiday! I just want to be able to start our own traditions! And if I don’t somehow find a way to make it to everyone it’s MY fault.
I’m upset because my fiancé’s family always gets together on every holiday. I think I’m somewhat jealous because my family isn’t like that. Maybe that’s why I hate going to his family gatherings, because my family never gathers therefore we never do anything with my family. It’s always his. I’m not the biggest fan of his family. I like them, I definitely don’t love them. I put up with them for sake of my relationship. I just wish we could start a few of our own family traditions.