Not In Jersey: Evolving Family Traditions Evolving Family Traditions - Not In Jersey

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Evolving Family Traditions

A lot of things I share on my blog are about our family’s Jewish traditions. Dave and I have been married just about 12 years (come back later this week for posts about our anniversary!) and I barely remember what it was like to start traditions fresh as a newly married couple. Kim from HappyPrettyBlog is still a newlywed (at least compared to me) and is here today reflecting on creating traditions with her husband and her soon to be born son.

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Hi Not in Jersey readers! I'm Kim from HappyPrettyBlog and Dara has so kindly offered me the opportunity to share something with you!

Over the past few years, my whole life has been about change. My then fiancĂ© and I bought our first home, we got married and spent our first holiday season outside of our parents’ homes and while this was an exciting and new prospect, it did bring about some feelings of sadness. I was so very excited to be spending my first Christmas with my new husband, but everything was so ... well, different!

As children, we grow up learning and knowing the holiday traditions that take place in our families year after year. The decorations, the smells, the people, the activities, the sounds. They are all so familiar and comforting. So last year, I almost felt lost. We tried our very best to combine our traditions, to make time for each family (luckily we all live close together) and to carry on with as much of that comforting familiarity that we could. And in the end, it was lovely :) It sure wasn't the same, but it was our own. At times, it didn't quite feel like Christmas at all but I kept telling myself that it was OK for us to make our own traditions with our new life and that was enough to keep me from feeling too sad from missing all of those things from holidays gone by.

This year, more change. I am 8 months pregnant with our first child (a boy!!) and we know that we are now on the verge of a bigger life change than we've ever experienced before. Because I am rather large and uncomfortable, we opted for an artificial tree this year ... a first for me! But this year, all I keep thinking about are the things that I want to do with my son NEXT year on his very first Christmas. My husband Nick and I have been discussing the types of traditions we'd like to start with him and the warmth and joy we want him to feel during the holiday season. We discussed the values that we want to instill in him, not only throughout the holiday season, but extending all through the year. And we are so excited to be on this new path that life is creating for us! Our families are also embracing the changes right along with us and are so very supportive. Our son will be the first grandchild on both sides, so they are also excited to be creating new traditions right along with us.

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Much like the cycles of the seasons, our lives occur in a series of cycles too. Over the past few years, I've learned to embrace this evolution, instead of mourn for times that have passed. We are the ones in charge of our futures, and the futures of our children and it's up to us to create the same magical holiday experiences that our parents gave to us.

Have a very happy and safe holiday season, from my family to yours!

Kim

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So my question is: what sort of family traditions do you have? Are they traditions you grew up with or formed with your husband and children? I think it’s great that Kim is thinking about all of this and discussing it with her husband as they wait for their son to join their family. I can’t wait to hear all about their family of 3!

2 comments:

Kimberley Tobin said...

Thanks for having me!

Leslie @ Violet Imperfection said...

This is an excellent post! It is so hard to combine traditions, this year was an eye opener with Violet. We were all over the place this last month and it was too much for all of us. I think I might instate the if you want to see us come to us rule for Christmas Day next year,