Day #10 Traditions
Traditions have always been part of the holidays. Whether it is creating your own new traditions or following ones that have been in your family for years. Both can really help set the feelings we have during the holidays.
I used to remember growing up watching the Macy’s Day parade on television. We would get up and turn it on and watch all the floats and at the very end was always Santa Clause. For my family, this signaled the beginning of the Christmas holiday season. This did not seem to be isolated to my family either. This is the period when the city would begin decorating, other families would begin decorating and holiday music would begin to be played on the radio. This is a tradition that seems to have fallen by the wayside but only because the line of when the Christmas period begins has been so blurred.
There are many other traditions that help set the atmosphere of the holidays. Some towns have tree lighting ceremonies and parades. Families have yearly parties for family and friends. Places of business have holiday parties to celebrate with their employees. Neighbors bake cookies and candies and share them with each other. All of these traditions help people to really feel the holidays. It surrounds you and if you allow it then it can be warm and inviting.
One tradition that I would really enjoy seeming more of would be caroling. It seems weird to me, but I really liked hearing people go caroling (as long as there were a lot of them and they could sing). They would walk neighborhoods trading songs for Christmas treats. I know I cannot sing, except in the shower, so I could not revive this but I sure would like to see it again.
Another tradition that I had growing up which I did like, mainly because I could go off by myself, was sledding. Once the snow fell where we lived we would go up to the mountains and there was this huge hill that people would hike part way up and sled down. It was crazy because we would go up so high and then sled directly at the parking lot. There were numerous times that people hit parked cars or people who were not paying attention and get hurt. I loved the crisp cool air saying it is winter time. The sounds of laughter and screaming (out of pure exhilaration of course). The taste of hot chocolate warmed by the fire at the sledding hill. All of these things were reminders of the time of year and the things that possibly could be.
I know I harped on the fact that most of the traditions have disappeared but isn’t that the nature of evolution. The trick is can we incorporate parts of the old traditions within new ones. That way the blend of the old and new can make the traditions more meaningful, yet still relevant.