Within my family, we celebrate and take part in many traditions. Some are relatively universal and don’t require much explanation, while others are more distinct and unique to our family.
Here are a few of the traditions of my family:
- The White Button-Down Shirt – Every year, we dress Hayden up in a white button-down shirt from The Gap. We started this on his first birthday and plan on continuing the tradition until he’s 18. He will grow into the shirt as he ages. It is adorable to see him grow and change as he wears the same shirt. It really is remarkable.
- Christmas Ornaments – Every year since Hayden was born, we have dressed him up in his Christmas pajamas, taken his picture, and put the picture in a picture frame ornament and hung it on the tree. I think when he is older and he looks back at those ornaments, he will appreciate it. I always enjoy seeing myself through the years – hopefully he will too.
- Pumpkin Family – Every year, we go to a pumpkin patch and pick pumpkins that represent each family member: Randy, Me, Hayden, and Alfie (the dog). We don’t carve the pumpkins, we simply place them on our porch and allow them to represent each one of us. It’s fun!
- Triple Anniversary Celebration – Randy and I’s wedding anniversary is June 13th. My parents’ wedding anniversary is July 5th. My sister and her husband’s wedding anniversary is June 27th. Every year, we all get together and have dinner to celebrate our anniversaries. Hence the name of the tradition: Triple Anniversary Celebration.
- Hayden’s Height – Since Hayden was 1, we have been measuring and documenting his height by marking it on his armoire with a black Sharpie. In addition to the height markings, we also take pictures of the process – that way we can look back and see what he actually looked like when the measurements occurred.
- Dying Easter Eggs – For as long as I can remember, I have dyed Easter eggs with my parents. I have never done it alone. I have never done it with just Randy. We always go over to my parents’ home and do it with them. It is something I enjoy and appreciate – spending quality time with my family.
- Engagement Anniversary – Randy and I got engaged on New Year’s Eve. Every year around that time, we make a point of going to dinner (just the two of us) to the same restaurant in which the engagement occurred. And although the restaurant itself has actually changed ownership several times, it remains a wonderful eatery – one that we will continue to patronize every year around our engagement anniversary. It’s nice to go back there and just remember that moment. Because it truly was a wonderful evening.
As you can see, I really value and appreciate traditions. They are part of my life – a central aspect of my being that I cherish and adore. They help to keep me stable – and for that, and for them, I am grateful.