Traditions are important at my house. We have such things as birthday week, Christmas breakfast, Mother's Day cook-out, even come home on Sunday days. Then comes those other traditions that aren't built around holidays and we wonder how and why they got started. These little traditions have become habits and we wonder if we should break them. Would something drastic happen if we tried something new?
It's not that I don't like the traditions at my house, after all I helped create many of them. But today is Thursday, and that means once again my granddaughters want pancakes for breakfast. They ask for pancakes every Thursday. They love Grampy's pancakes, they love my pancakes. Sometimes they enjoy helping to make pancakes, sometimes they are too busy playing, but still request pancakes. Heaven forbid if we run out of pancake mix. That only means an early run to the store for pancake supplies. I did try waffles one day and although my little ones ate the substitute, they looked so disappointed that I couldn't venture from the traditional pancakes the next week.
So I ask you, in years to come is this little tradition going to be something my granddaughters will look back on with fondness in their eyes? Saying, 'we always had pancakes at Gramma and Gramps.' Or will they roll their eyes that certain way and say, 'all we ever had was pancakes at Gram and Gramps.' As a grandparent I find this a quandary. I enjoy making loving memories, even silly ones like pancakes every Thursday. But as I look back over the memories of raising my own children, I especially like the minor traditions we created as a family. They are uniquely our own. They are what sets us apart from your family. And I bet your family would not want to trade your family traditions for mine. Simple traditions are some of the strongest glue that binds families together. Just like in 'Ever After,' the Cinderella story starring Drew Berrymore, the maids tell Leonardo not to leave just yet. Cinderella is in the coach driving away, but still they wait. It's tradition! And sure enough, Cinderella peeks out the window and waves. The tradition has been fulfilled and all are satisfied.
Traditions really do satisfy our needs. These acts may be something as simple as a wave of farewell, or tooting the horn as we leave our family for our own homes. Or pancakes on Thursday. But they fill some void we didn't know we had. They connect us to each other on that special level that says I care. I care enough to continue what was started long ago.
And so it's time to go play Barbies. It's what we do every week. After all it is Thursday.
Til next time ~
Deb (DL Larson)