All the hustle, bustle, and fuzz about the season can be such a chore. With all the things you need to finish and accomplish before the big day on the 25th, you just don’t have time to breathe anymore. Even with little sleep you strive to bake that Christmas cookie, wrap that gift, and install the Christmas lights.
You force everyone to don matching tops and hear Christmas eve mass along with family and friends. You drive miles to visit grandparents, uncles, aunts, and other relatives. You take photos beside the tree, make kids wait for Christmas before they can open their gifts. And when your little ones groan about all the fuss in defiance you exclaim “it’s tradition!”.
But why the need for Christmas tradition? Why the need for New Year’s eve fuss each and every year? Can’t we just skip all these because it’s just another day for other people anyway?
After losing both parents I now know why Christmas and New Years eve traditions are important for our children. And traditions need not be expensive or too time consuming.
My dad was big on Christmas traditions, he was the master of giving surprises, he has a way to make his children feel special and get excited about occassions. He liked going to the beach, eating out, having backyard barbeque with the family on Sundays. He loved taking us to carnivals and fairs. He was a very busy man on weekdays but on weekends he would make every minute count.
He liked investing on experiences and spending time doing activities. I always looked forward to weekends with my dad. And Christmas was a special day for me because of my father.
He’d make me hang socks by the window a few days before Christmas. And every morning before the 25th I’d have candy and chocolates inside. He’d take us to fairs and carnivals and it was such a blast.
I remember one time we went to hear Christmas mass, I must have been five years old. I remember entering this huge church with many bright lights and lots of happy people.
Sadly he died soon after that, I was six. Eventhough it’s been more than two decades I still remember my dad.
People get surprised to know that I have so many memories of my dad which I can recall in detail.
My father was one who invested so much time making memories with us so eventhough I lost him early in my life I can still remember him. I have memories I hold on to and can recall.
Traditions allow us to create memories with our chidren, gather experiences they can keep with them for the rest of their lives. They make Christmas and new year celebrations special.
It gives our children something to look forward to the entire year. It gives them something nice to expect.
And traditions need not be expensive or too time consuming. It can be as simple as decorating the tree, hanging Christmas lights, calling or visiting relatives and writing letters for loved ones.
Your children will cherish these moments long after your gone. They will carry these memories with them and pass on traditions to their children.
Even when you’re gone they will recall and tell stories of how special you made Christmas for them. How excited you made them, how happy they were when they were with you.
They will continue these traditions with their own children to honor you and your memory. This way, you will continue to live in their hearts.