Saturday, January 29, 2011

Birthday Tradition Continues (1)

Have you ever started a family tradition that has carried on throughout the years? Some of ours have included:

Sharing Thanksgiving dinner together and then planning to put up our Christmas tree on the day after Thanksgiving.

Attending Christmas Eve service in the evening and then getting Chinese food to bring home (a tradition that started by accident when we first went to a late Christmas Eve service – only to find zero restaurants opened for business, until we came by a Chinese Restaurant near our home – we have done the same every year since).

And, of course, as I wrote last week, celebrating our kids’ birthdays twice –  once in the morning of the big day and once on the next weekend complete with cake and ice-cream!

But, have you ever started a family tradition that you later saw your children continue to carry out? If so, you know that this is one of the richest rewards that you can experience!

I have often told my kids that, as lame as they might find me to be as they get older, they will use some of my parenting skills and silly family traditions with their own families.

Little by little, there is evidence that I am correct! YES!! My kids are all too happy (at least in this case!) to admit that their dad just might be on to something.

Here are the details:

As I shared way back on April 25, 2009 (, we have started each child’s birthday morning by getting all other family members to quietly enter the birthday person’s bedroom in the morning and then wake them up with a variety of musical “Happy Birthday” performances, complete, in various years, with guitars, drums, trumpets, trombones, clarinets, and, with great pride, some terribly off-key singing, mixed in with some in-tune singing for good measure! 

Yes, a truly awful, yet strangely pleasurable, way to be awakened on the big day!

All in all, since this tradition started when our youngest child was a year old, our kids have looked forward to this every year with the same anticipation with which one looks forward to Christmas! It’s a great family tradition; they love it; we keep doing it; and I just know that they will do the same when they have kids someday (hey, maybe they’ll invite grandpa over in the morning to help!).

So, what happened this year to keep the tradition alive while I was out of town? (Please come back next Saturday to find out!)

Paul W. Reeves

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