An Inspiring Look at Holiday Family Traditions
A quick Google search of “Family and holidays” will yield some really interesting results. Among the top hits are:
- Dysfunctional Family Holidays
- When Families Fight During the Holidays
- How to Minimize Family Conflict During the Holidays
- Why Are Holidays With Your Family So Stressful?
- 8 Tips for Busy Families to Reclaim the Holidays
This sad, and somewhat depressing list of most talked about issues got us thinking that there has to be some good stories about family holiday gatherings. So, in search of some encouragement, we scoured the Internet for inspiring families (they exist!) and meaningful family traditions that could easily be adopted to whatever Holiday you celebrate. Here’s what we found…
Tradition: Honoring Mom through Shared Experience
Family: The Beverages
Back in 1984, in an attempt to escape the holiday shopping crowd, Morris Beverage drove his kids to a small downtown to let them buy a gift for their mom. However, when they arrived the only stores that were still open were coffee shops and antique stores. The kids ate pie and bought a few antiques for mom. And the next year, they wanted to do it again! Thus a new holiday tradition was born. Now, almost 30 years later, the family still walks the same route to get their mom’s gifts each holiday season through a shared experience providing greater connection for all involved.
Tradition: Honoring Family and The Sweetness of Traditions
Family: The Thompsons
Jodie Thompson has saved Christmas tree decorations from generations on both sides of her family. Every year as the family decorates the Christmas tree, she hangs the ornaments and reminisces about hanging the same ones as a small child with her Nanna and Grandma. With this tradition, other members of her family now hear the stories of years gone by and loved ones who are no longer with them. For Jodie, Christmas is about family and by treasuring these ornaments she says she knows her grandparents would be immensely proud.
Tradition: Opening Your Home – And Hearts – Beyond the Traditional
Family: The Davidsons
Punk and her husband Junius threw their first Christmas night party at their home in Memphis, TN in 1965, the year they got married, as a way to have both sets of their parents come to one place. But, it quickly grew. As the years passed, friends, neighbors and other family members began to join. Still, they say, that everyone who comes has meant something in their lives. All are welcome and no one is “just an acquaintance.”
Tradition: Life Changing Love
Family: A Perfect Lily
Voted the #1 most inspirational family blog on Pop Sugar’s Circle of Moms, A Perfect Lily is a mother of ten (yikes!) writing letters to her youngest child, who has Down syndrome. Aside from classic holiday traditions, this family’s favorite annual holiday event is helping to raise money for Reece’s Rainbow, an organization that helps find families and provide grants for orphans with Down syndrome in Eastern European nations.
Tradition: Nurturing the Father-Daughter Connection Beyond the Formative Years
Family: The Bundys
For almost two decades, Holly Bundy and her father Perry Beeson have been building gingerbread houses together. They began with patterns from a book, but soon began creating their own designs, including a replica of the family home. Now, though Holly is in her 30’s, the dad and daughter team still gathers each year for their “special time together” during the holidays.
Tradition: Honoring the Gift of Loved Ones by Sharing The Warmth of The Holiday
Family: The Brumms
Kristin Brumm had her children later in life, and there was a time she wondered if she would ever have children at all. During one of those wishful years, she bought a copy of Samuel Clement’s classic book ‘Twas The Night Before Christmas.” She tucked it away for “someday” when she had her own kids. Now, a mother of two, she pulls it out each year and is doubly-grateful for her “lovely kids and the magic of Christmas as seen through their eyes.”
Holidays are the best time to connect, share, and open your heart to all that is possible in the world and ready ourselves for the oncoming New Year. Tell us your beloved family holiday tradition in the comments!