Family "habits" (superstitions)

My family keeps one Christmas ornament or decoration “out” year round – symbolizes the spirit of the holidays, I guess.

(Of course, the “spirit” in my family usually involved going into debt and drinking to excess, but heck, we do that year round too.)

Another habit for the quilters in my family (and others too, I know) is to make sure there’s some imperfection in the finished product.

Practiced quilters say it’s because “only God makes something perfect” – I usually comply with this by accident, but I’m absolved from fixing my mistakes. Cool, huh?

Your family have any weird practices in this area?

Before we could open Xmas presents, my family would form a conga/bunnyhop line and snake our way thru the house singing carols. Dad would lead, wearing a funny hat. It doesn’t sound bad now, but I hated it as a kid. The worst was when I got tall and was forced to lead the parade. Guess what? None of the 4 kids in my family make their own families do this now. I guess we all hated it.

At Christmastime the three of us kids would take turns putting the spire on top of the tree. so each of us would do it once every three years, After a few turns, of course, we grew out of it.

We don’t really have any family habits or superstitions. There’s things we do the same way all the time, like letting my great-grandma lead the food line when we have get-togethers (she’s 95 and has darn well earned the right to eat first). But I’m going to keep my eye on this thread…maybe I’ll get some good ideas for family traditions I can start myself :slight_smile:

At weddings in my dad’s family, people bring their gifts to the reception. After the cake ceremony (feeding slices to each other simultaneously, NOT that juvenile smearing-on-face business!) they pick one, read the card word for word, then open the package and examine the gift in detail: “A pasta maker! Oh, wow…the instructions say it makes ziti, penne pasta, mostaccioli…” This lasts about four or five gifts before someone says, “Enough already; let’s DAAAAANCE!” It inspires creativity among the gift-givers, though.

Remember, I’m pulling for you; we’re all in this together.
—Red Green

As a kid, I went with my mom and her mom to the cemetery each May to clean up and plant geraniums (always geraniums) around the graves of my grandfather, great-grandparents, and great-aunts/uncles. It was not maudlin. Every year I’d hear old and new stories about relatives I never knew, until I feel I knew them myself. I grew to cherish that outing. Now my mom and I keep up the tradition.

“With enough courage, you can do without a reputation.” - Rhett Butler

We save the trunk of each year’s Christmas tree (cut into logs) to burn in the fireplace the following Christmas. Adds a feeling of continuity.

kanashimi and OldBroad - What wonderful traditions! Do you mind if I borrow them for my family?


He who joyfully marches in rank and file has already earned my contempt. He has been given a large brain by mistake, since for him the spinal cord would suffice - Albert Einstein

During all the nights in December before Christmas, my mom would make all of us kneel before a candle and small statue of baby Jesus and we had to pray in front of it for 10 minutes.

Also, we leave the Christmas tree up until the middle of January. There’s a religious reason to this, I forgot what it was.

This isn’t my family, but at a yearly family Christmas party of a friend of mine, they bring out a cake (They call it the Jesus Cake) and sing happy birthday to Baby Jesus. The kids love it.

Jazzmine - please do! I can’t quite express the feeling I get when last year’s tree comes back in to add to the current year’s holiday. I hope you get the same feeling.

Popokis5 - When my kids were small, we made a Jesus birthday cake which they decorated. It was my small attempt to retain the meaning of the holiday without being preachy.

I just have to say - Scarred, you made my day! I was laughing so hard at your tradition (no offense), I almost fell out of my chair at work. That is fantastic.