Sprinkling reindeer food outside on Christmas Eve, grandma’s sweet potato pie at Thanksgiving dinner, cutting down a tree at your favorite Christmas tree farm…
We all have family traditions!
Some have been handed down for generations while others you may have just started when you had kids. Either way they are the perfect way to bring the family together in celebration!
A tradition is defined as “the transmission of customs or beliefs from generation to generation, or the fact of being passed on in this way.” (Credit given to Google) For me, a tradition is a recreated act or moment that reminds us of the importance of family. Traditions may have been passed down from 5 generations or it is something you started when you first got married. Either way, repeating this action or moment helps instill family values.
These days it’s hard for families to spend quality time together. Between work, school, sports, clubs, PTO meetings and more, families are lucky if they have dinner together more than once a week. By starting or continuing a tradition, families are sure to make time for each other. No matter the age of the children, when it’s time to cut down that tree or go skiing the first weekend it snows, everyone comes together in excitement.
There are so many reasons having family traditions are important. As time goes by and families grow and change so do traditions but the core meaning behind them stays the same. You may no longer bake cookies with all your aunts and cousins but you will bake them with your kids and their kids. It may not be the same cookies or the same recipes but the cookie baking tradition lives on, and that is what is important!
5 Reasons Traditions are Important
Brings Families Together
Traditions bring families together from a newly engaged couple to a family of 7 kids to multiple generations. No matter the size of your family, having traditions allows your family to come together with a common purpose and goal. It helps everyone remember the importance of family and maintaining that support system. These days with all the technology available, families can still “come together” even if that means it is done through Skype or FaceTime.
Expands Cultural Awareness
Many times a family tradition that is passed on from generation to generation has a cultural meaning. This allows kids (and adults) to get in touch with their roots and become more aware of different cultures. It can also bring generations together as the grandson works with his grandfather to make the popcorn garland or the great grandkids help roll the meatballs. It helps teach kids where they came from which can give them perspective regarding where they are going!
Creates Life Long Memories
Family traditions help families create memories that can last a lifetime. We hold on to those memories and remember them fondly. The tradition “fails” often make for the best memories. For instance, I will never forget the time my grandmother made her famous oatmeal cookies but forgot the OATMEAL!
When families get together, you also have the opportunity to take pictures that can be displayed on everyone’s walls for years. In addition, traditions are often what families look back on fondly and are a source of happiness during times of sorrow. For instance, when my grandmother passed away, remembering the “oatmeal cookie incident” made me laugh amidst my tears.
Creates a Sense of Belonging
Many times, as we get older, we grow apart from our families. We, at times, have a sense of loneliness. This can be especially true when someone chooses to move across the country for a new job or even just to the next state after getting married. Getting together for a family tradition, helps people feel like they are a part of something, like they belong. It gives people a sense of support and security, even if it is just for a little bit.
Increases Family Values
Creating a new family tradition or maintaining one that has been around for years, helps increase children’s understanding about the importance of family. It helps instill values such as loyalty, honesty and trust, all needed to be a happy and successful person in life. Being together as a family helps strengthen those values.
There are so many reasons to keep a tradition going or create your own. Whatever your reason and whatever your tradition, I hope you enjoy years of happiness and create a lifetime of memories!