Wednesday, October 31, 2012

traditiiiiion, tradition

there's a story in my family that when i was about four or so, i reportedly went up to my mom (who was holding my baby brother matt at the time) and proclaimed, "someday i will be able to play catch with matty, once he is a human bean!"  i totally get what i meant, and man: these days sho is a total, full-fledged human bean (and then some).  she can communicate in such clear and funny full sentences, act, turn on light switches, and breakdance.  homo erectus at its finest.

i feel like the older she gets, the better suited i am to being her mom.  i loved her as a baby, so fragrant and mysterious, but i am having a lot more fun with her these days, as an interactive human bean.  i predict that my perfect mothering age will probably be 8-12 or so, since i love activities and projects and roald dahl.  but this age, right now, is pretty great too.

so due to her human bean status upgrade, i've been thinking a lot about the traditions i'd like to raise her with.  especially since the shape our future will take is so unknown right now, i would like to set down some roots in the customs that we follow together each year.  this little blog doesn't get too many comments, but i would truly love to hear from any of you dear readers out there about your favorite traditions that you grew up with, not just this season but any time of year.

we do a curry night (usually in october) instead of thanksgiving each year with my mom's side of the family, with overflowing bowls of rice and a dozen little bowls of different toppings (peanuts, pineapple, coconut) and two huge simmering pots full of the curry that my dad spent an entire heavenly-smelling day slaving over.  my mom gets small favors for the little ones (last year it was a couple of bugs that stuck to the wall, then walked slowly down to the ground).  another tradition we have is of opening one gift the night before christmas, then reading the polar express and night tree out loud.  on valentines day, my mom always had a little prettily wrapped gift waiting for my brother and me on our breakfast plates in the morning.  and for birthdays, the kitchen is decorated with streamers the night before, so when you wake up, the ordinary has been transformed into something far more exciting, just for you.  these are all such little things, but some of my happiest memories of childhood revolve around these dependable traditions.

i'm sure i'll be incorporating many of them into sho's growing-up, but the thought that i can just sit down and make up my own traditions for shoshi's childhood is rather intoxicating.  i'd love to hear any suggestions!  xo

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  1. Somehow I got left out of this....but my dad and sister bake apple pies (with humongous michigan apples) every fall. They've never missed a year...and its been ongoing for 19 years!!!

  2. aww...traditions, they can certainly make holidays so memorable. Every christmas eve we pick out one gift to open, and save the rest for christmas day, I know you mentioned this, but it holds such fond memories that also put it down. Every year for christmas my mother and I pick an angel child from the tree and we spend the whole day shopping for the unknown child, picking out the things he/she needs and a few of their wants, we drink hot chocolate and spend the whole day glowing knowing we are helping make a child's christmas just a little better, after the shopping we drop the gifts off (we never meet/ see the child) and the spend the evening watching christmas movies. It is truly magical. Growing up once a month my father would spend the day making fried rice, it was the only time he ever cooked, it was his special recipe and we looked forward to it everytime, we would eat it with vigor and after dinner we would head outside to play night games, so awesome. On a side note, I check this blog everyday to see what you and sho are up to, I love reading about your little adventures, so you keep writing and I will comment more.

  3. My family is chock-full of ghost story lovers, so every early fall when it was still nice enough to be outside but cool enough to bundle a little, we'd have a bonfire, drink cider or hot chocolate, and tell ghost stories. Usually the stories were the same ones we heard every year, but new friends sometimes joined, we ready scary poems or short stories, and always, ALWAYS sang, "ghost of john" in a round, naturally.

  4. I was so surprised to see that you eat curry on Thanksgiving as this is also a tradition in my husband's family. Another fun tradition on these holidays when the whole family is together, after the meal we'll put on a pot of coffee and play card games late into the night. In my family, when we have a get together, my mom likes to take out our family albums tell all the funny anecdotes that make up our family history.