At Thanksgiving and throughout the year, create a museum of memories in your child’s life
We all have family traditions. For some, it’s the little things like pancakes every Saturday morning or playing a game on Friday nights that deepen family bonds. Other traditions, like the annual family reunion or a special trip for a 16th birthday, also build lifelong memories.
Traditions define the identity of a family and offer a sense of belonging to each member.
Dennis Rainey, president and CEO of Family Life, says: “Make an effort to establish some significant practices that you repeat year after year. Those repetitive events build stability and a sense of continuity in your child’s life. Vacations, stories and traditions will come together to form a museum of memories in your child’s life that will serve as a solid foundation for him as he begins his own family.”
Start by creating family traditions during the Thanksgiving season. Here are a few ideas to consider.
Start a family gratitude journal. Encourage each family member to record one thing each day they’re grateful to God for in their life. Use this journal template for November to get you started.
Decorate a Thanksgiving tablecloth. Buy a fabric or plastic tablecloth and use it on Thanksgiving Day. Set out fabric markers. Ask family and friends to write or draw something they are thankful for this year. Bring out the tablecloth each year at Thanksgiving time so family members can keep adding to it.
Read the story of the 10 lepers in Luke 17:11-19. Ask your children how they would have reacted if Jesus had healed them.
Pray at meal time and thank God for His provisions. Ask a different family member to pray each meal so everyone feels comfortable praying aloud.
Read a children’s book by Awana President/CEO Jack Eggar, Sparky Shines His Light. The book teaches kids the importance of gratitude.
Here are a few ideas to extend family traditions throughout the year:
Start a celebration plate tradition. Celebrate the small and big accomplishments of a family member at mealtime by using a special plate. Choose someone to use the plate at the next meal to make that person feel loved and valued.
Plan family vacations each year. Visit new places or return to your family’s favorite spot. Some families plan “staycations” and do fun things around their area.
Celebrate holidays and birthdays with favorite foods and extended family members. Learn about family traditions from the older generation and record stories in a journal or on video.
Keep Christ at the center of all your family’s traditions. Model His love and grace in all you do.
Involve your kids. It will be much more fun to participate in something they have helped plan.
A new tradition to start in my family is _________________________.
Have fun creating traditions with your family. Realize that some traditions may fade out, like carving pumpkins in the fall, as children grow up. Build memories that bind your family together this holiday season.
What is one of your family’s favorite traditions?
This entry was posted on Thursday, November 1st, 2012 at 3:03 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.