Family traditions help provide to each family member a home,
environment, and relationships of purpose in a world of confusion,
disorganization, and decreasing morals and values. Traditions provide
families the desired foundation of comfort, familiarity, and
consistency, which certainly helps ensure that family disunity,
dysfunction, and eventual separation does not occur. And yet, the most
effective family traditions are not those that only occur annually on
certain holidays – they are made evident in daily and weekly habits and
actions that are simple, yet significant.
No, these traditions are not about large meals, big events, fancy
decorations, or annual celebrations – these are the very traditions
that help define who we are, determine our personal and family
happiness, and even the eventual outcome of our children. As you will
see below, there are 15 family traditions listed (the first 15 are
contained in part 1 of the Family Traditions article
series), and there certainly could be hundreds more listed. These 30
listed, however, are traditions that make a difference because they
require effort, creativity, consistency, and most importantly – the
ability to make time for the most important relationships in life – our family!
16) Monthly Family Nights: Perhaps every 3rd
Sunday is ‘Popcorn and Pop’ night. Every 4th Friday is ‘Family Movie
Night.’ Every 1st Saturday is ‘Family Game Night.’ Etc. – be creative!
17) ‘I Love You’: Not only will parent(s)
say ‘I Love You’ before each child goes to bed, but each child too will
say ‘I Love You’ to each sibling and parent before going to bed.
18) Dinner Q&A: Frequently allow
child(ren) to ask questions and have open discussions at dinner time.
It can be anything from homework related, to issues with friends, to
things they are wondering about, something they heard at school, etc.
While the questions and answers are important – the most important
aspect of this tradition is creating an environment where children feel
comfortable talking to and coming to parents (not friends, the
internet, or any other source) for their answers and help. (And – make
eating a meal together daily a tradition/habit as well).
19) Bed Time Stories / Reading: Make sure
you read stories to your children each night before bed. If children
are older, have them read a good book (not homework related) – simply
to develop a love for books and an increased ability to read.
20) Family Journal: Keep a family journal, and encourage kids to keep a personal journal. Write in it often.
21) Holiday Significance:
Ensure that each holiday, you at least take 20-30 minutes talking
about, celebrating, or learning more about the significance of that
22) Cultural & Educational Nights: Go to
the library and rent books or DVD’s on other cultures. Buy food from
other cultures, and have occasional meals from other cultures. Invite
neighbors and friends over who are of a different background, country,
religion, or culture. Listen to music from other cultures. In addition
– check out books, DVD’s, documentaries, etc. – not for entertainment
but for educational insight and intellectual development.
23) Family Service Activities: Put it into
the calendar that every other month (or as often as you prefer) you as
a family will help volunteer in some type of community service project
24) No TV, Movies, or Internet Night: Turn
off the TV, don’t rent a movie, and do NOT turn on the internet /
computer for one night. Do this once a month. The goal of course is to
simply spend time as a family, play games, go visit a friend or
neighbor, do some service, work in the yard, go for a run or bike ride,
read a book, etc. But do it as a family!
25) Family Sleepovers / Campouts: In the
summertime – go out in the backyard and just camp-out. Sleep under the
stars with the kids – put up a tent, pull out the sleeping bags, tell
stories, play night games, etc. During the winter – simply camp out in
the family room. Watch a movie together, play games, tell jokes … just
have fun and spend time together.
26) ‘Bedtime Talks’: Make it a goal
(tradition), at least once a week, to just have ‘talks’ with each child
when they go to bed. Do it one on one in their room, and just talk.
Laugh, tell jokes, and build friendships. More importantly, listen,
teach, and love!
27) ‘Sponsor a Child’: Have each child contribute a small amount of money and ‘sponsor’ a child in a developing country.
28) Yearly Intellectual Activities: Once a
year, have an ‘animal day’ and visit the pet shop, animal shelter, or
pound. Collect insects, feed birds, or ride horses. Develop an
appreciation for animals. Likewise, have an annual ‘music day.’ Go to a
play, an opera, a musical. ‘Museum or Art Days’ – go visit an art
exhibit or local museum, etc. ‘Education day’ – tour a local
university, buy a new book, talk about and prepare for future
schooling/education, etc. The list could go on and on – be creative!
29) Annual History Day: Make it a point, at least once a year, to go visit local historical spots, museums, significant places, etc.
30) Once a Month ‘Invite a Neighbor Over’:
Each month, invite a neighbor (friend or relative) into your home. Be a
friend and get to know them. Don’t rent a movie or watch TV – instead,
play games together, share a meal, and just have fun!
To your family’s success!
About the Author: Matt is the founder of http://www.Tips4Families.com/
– a website full of helpful parenting advice, fun games and activities,
traditions and holiday ideas, and tips and articles for families
everywhere. Matt is also the author of: “Great Games! 175 Games &
Activities for Families, Groups, & Children.” To view the book and
learn more, visit: http://www.GreatGamesBook.com/
Article Source: ArticlesBase.com - Family Traditions – 30 Fun & Meaningful Ideas for Any Family (Part 2)