Holidays - Blog

Why You Love Traditions

Emilie Vinson
Why you love traditions

Like clockwork, it’s happened the weekend before Christmas for as long as I can remember. Cookie Day. Parents and siblings and cousins and nieces and nephews all gather to create our stock of Christmas cookies.

We’re like a well-oiled machine, turning out anywhere between 10 and 15 batches of cookies through the day, then splitting them up between families before everyone heads home.

The women often wear matching aprons. The older kids help the younger kids roll out their cookie dough and cut out cookies. A few people rotate through washing a never-ending pile of dishes.

This is tradition for us.

It’s been passed from generation to generation – a day we gather and mark time as a family. It’s a day we spend together, anticipating the arrival of Christmas and celebrating the fact that we’re all under one roof, even if it’s just for a little while.

But traditions can come in all shapes and sizes.

“Traditions are symbolic,” Sabrina McDonald writes in a FamilyLife article, 10 Great Ideas for Christmas Traditions. “Perhaps the most important purpose of traditions in the Christian community is to remind us of Christ Himself. This is most obvious in the symbol of communion. In Luke 22:19, we find Jesus leading the disciples in the first communion. At the end of this verse, He says, ‘Do this in remembrance of Me.’”

For some, traditions center around holidays, such as Thanksgiving. Here is how some Cru staff members use tradition to celebrate.

  • madileighsmiles My family always goes on a Thanksgiving walk or hike...depending on how much we ate.

  • angelmcc Last year, my family wrote down what we are thankful for on construction paper feathers and taped them to a giant paper turkey on the wall. I loved sharing in that way - plus we made my dad craft. You can't beat it!

  • gracie_sesta My brother and cousins who are all in their 30s break out the giant bucket of Legos that is stored away in the basement. Now that there are a couple little guys running around it's even more special to keep the Lego tradition going.

  • aliwheels As soon as dinner is over we decorate the Christmas tree!

  • cwrenn21 Starting the meal off with what we are all thankful for this year, the feast, a family walk after dinner then a night of board games together!

  • Rebecca Gonzales We make cinnamon rolls in the morning and watch the parade while we start all the cooking! smile emoticon That, and after dinner, the cousins, siblings, aunts and uncles spread all the black friday ads out all over the floor and decide on Christmas gifts we're going to attack the next day. lol

  • Hayley Newsom When my granny passed away and families grew and moved away, the rest of us looked for new traditions. We felt kind of sad that things changed, but making a paper chain and writing on each strip something we were thankful for was fun. Then we took the chain to hang in my other grandmother's hospital room to cheer her up because she couldn't join us for dinner.

For others, a tradition could be different. It might be making time as a family to talk about each person’s happiest and saddest moment of the day or intentionally gathering for a meal together.

Ultimately, traditions help create stability in a world that is constantly changing. They highlight the things that are important, the things worth remembering and holding onto – things like family, gratitude, faith.

What traditions are part of your family?

What traditions would you like to begin incorporating into your life?

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