Family Traditions

I think traditions are so important for families! They give families a way to feel like a team, to work together, and to do or create something that they can be proud of. My family has some traditions that we all do together, but we also try to have some traditions that are between mother and daughter or father and son (or some other combination).

One of my favorite mother/daughter traditions is something that my younger daughter, Mary Grace, and I do together each year on December 2. This tradition began about 4 years ago when Mary Grace turned 7. It just so happened that year that she asked me to decorate a gingerbread house with her one day, and that day happened to be her birthday—December 2.

As we decorated the gingerbread house together, we thought that it might be a nice tradition to decorate one every year on her birthday. So the tradition began “accidentally,” but we have very purposefully kept it since then. You might want to take note of such events in your own life around the holidays or birthdays. It could be that a wonderful new tradition is in the making!

This year, my daughter turned 10. She’s thrilled to be in the double digits! I’m thrilled that she still very much wants to continue our gingerbread house decorating. I hope and pray that it will be something she wants to keep doing as long as she lives here, and possibly even after she marries and has a family of her own.

It’s not really the decorating that means so much to us. It’s simply that this is “our” time. It’s something we look forward to every year. It’s something special that the two of us share. We may listen to different music each year. We definitely have different discussions each year because, at her young age, her interests are much different from year to year. And the houses look so much different each time we make one. Her abilities have really improved from age 7 to age 10!

I thought today about how our tradition might continue to evolve over time. As a teenager, will she want to drink hot chocolate or even coffee while we work together? Will she want to talk about school or boys or work? Will she want to work together on a single house, or might she want us to work together but each on our own house? I hope one day that she’ll be interested in baking and creating our own gingerbread houses from scratch.

But, no matter what, I look forward to just being with her. To spending some time with her simply because I love her—simply because we want to be together.

Do you have any special traditions that you keep with your family, your husband, or your church? If not, it’s never too late to start one! It doesn’t have to be something big or difficult. It can be something as simple as watching a Christmas movie and drinking hot chocolate on Christmas Eve or baking cookies for the neighbors or Daddy’s office people. Pay attention to the things you do this Christmas that might be fun to turn into a tradition. You never know when something as simple as decorating a gingerbread house may turn into a life-long tradition.


Blessings to you and your family this Christmas season!


Wendy lives in the South with her wonderful hubby and 3 great kiddos! She is a Christian, homeschooling, work-from-home mom. She and Scott were high school sweethearts and have been married for more than 20 years. Her oldest child has autism, and Wendy began homeschooling her at age 2. Her son, a typical boy, would rather do anything than school! Her youngest child is a little social butterfly and people lover. Wendy loves reading and quilting and will hopefully return to scrapbooking some time soon. You can visit her personal blog at Homeschooling Blessings.



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