We practice conventional traditions; turkey on Thanksgiving, prayer before meals, Christmas stockings and gingerbread houses, among other things. However, there is one goofy-family tradition that’s greatly anticipated and manufactures "silly-family glue" that we all benefit from. I am talking about our Annual Halloween Dress-Up Dinner. This tradition started when our sons were quite young and, like most little kids, they loved to dress up in costumes. All. The. Time. My husband and I decided to channel our inner child and join them. Since then, every year we eat a special dinner in costumes and play games together afterward. Even though our sons are older now, I realize that it’s more important than ever to observe family traditions (especially the silly ones).
Here are some reasons why:1. Family traditions create good feelings and special moments to remember.
2. Family traditions give every member of the family a stronger sense of belonging.
3. Family traditions help your child with their identity. Face it; it helps to know that you ‘belong’ when you are trying to figure out who you are. Isn’t that the main job of adolescence?
4. Family traditions help parents instill the family’s values to their kids.
5. Family traditions offer kids a sense of security. Knowing our children face many difficult issues, practicing traditions reinforces that your child has a family to turn to when dealing with the outside world.
Our Dress-Up Dinner is a tradition we look forward to every year and it's a kooky way to maintain good family balance in our busy family life. Oh, and if you are wondering what my husband dressed up as this year, join the club! He scrounged through the costume box, then strapped on his new Halloween prop; Humphrey the Humping Dog. He was a hilarious sight that won’t easily be forgotten, no matter how hard we try!
Family traditions counter alienation and confusion. They help us define who we are; they provide something steady, reliable and safe in a confusing world. Susan Lieberman