My family loves a good ritual. We have our Christmas traditions — cutting down the tree, baking cookies, running or driving around town to look at the lights; and our Halloween traditions — once around the block with a stop at a friend's house for soup and then home to hand out goodies. But I also love it when a ritual is created that celebrates the randomness of life in a family. Even little things like ice cream on the last day of school or getting the same donuts every year on our family vacation can make a memory that much more meaningful.
So I was happy to stumble across "The Book of New Family Traditions: How to Create Great Rituals For Holidays and Everyday" by Meg Cox. The book has lots of cute ideas for adding rituals to all of your favorite holidays — from New Year's Day to Kwanzaa and everything in between. But the book also includes some great ways that families can incorporate traditions into the rest of the days of the year. Birthdays, half-birthdays, adoptions days, first day of school, last day of school, summer vacations, and family reunions are all covered. And she even has ideas to help you create traditions for the really day-to-day stuff such as mealtimes, bedtimes, chores, and even saying hello and goodbye each day.
My favorites include Sunday Sundaes (to reward kids for finishing up the weekend's homework and chores,) Fuss Towns (involves choosing designated towns in which kids can fuss on long car rides — but they can't whine until then and all fussing must stop once you reach the next town,) and Opera Meals (in which all communication at dinner must be done via singing.)
If you need help looking for ways to make holidays, birthdays, or even the day your teen gets her new driver's license more special, this is a great book to pick up.
Does your family have any special rituals? Please share in the comments!