Family Traditions are so important to your family’s wellbeing…
They create treasured memories, they build greater emotional resilience in your children, they give them a sense of belonging and they affirm their worth.
So here are some fun ideas which you can adapt to suit your family – I’ve laid them out month by month for you.
Have fun building Family Traditions of your own…
JANUARY : Goal setting
Set goals together for the coming year. Let everyone in the family choose one main goal for themselves: to improve their running time, learn all of their times tables, ride a bike without training wheels, swim across the local swimming pool. Whatever age appropriate goals would be good for your child, let them get involved in choosing it and celebrate their progress during the year.
FEBRUARY : Month of Love
Celebrate Valentine’s Day together : Make use of it as a day to write notes of encouragement to all members of the family, share a celebratory breakfast of waffles and strawberries with the family.
MARCH : Pancake Day
Have a pancake feast on pancake day and invite others to join you. Make both savoury and sweet – some with strawberries, cream and maple syrup, some with bacon or ham and cheese.
APRIL : Easter & new birth
Celebrate Easter with a family Easter egg hunt – just your family, or a gathering with other families. You could make it a bigger event if you wanted and also invite some of your neighbors.
MAY : Spring Clean
Have a spring clean & use it to give things away to others. You could all gather your clothes, toys and games that you no longer use and decide where and who to donate them to. You could also use the opportunity to sell some items and build entrepreneurial skills in your children – showing them how to sell something on ebay or on a local group online.
JUNE : Serve others
Think about how your whole family could serve others together.You could think of ways to serve and help others – a meal for a family with a new baby, volunteering together or giving a hamper or pamper package to someone who has been through a tough time. Pick a project, plan it together and let each family member have a job to do.
JULY : Celebrate achievements
Where we live in the Northern hemisphere, the third week of July is the end of the school year. You could have a family tradition that involves celebrating what your children have achieved in their school year – maybe they’ve improved in particular in a certain subject or project. Celebrate it in style – going out to their favourite burger place, getting balloons and banners or decorating the table at home in a special way, with certificates made especially for the achievements being acknowledged.
AUGUST : Summer Break
Make the most of the good weather and have a special family outing (or a few) to celebrate the holiday season – by going to the beach, having a picnic, riding bikes or getting on the water. Create a summer bucket list for the whole family and tick them off as you do them.
SEPTEMBER : Back to School
Celebrate ‘Back to school’ month with a treat for your children on their first day back at school. Mine are usually tired and a bit grumpy when they first start the school year again, so making it fun in some way helps their mood. And of course you have to take the obligatory ‘first day back’ school uniform photo!!
OCTOBER : Autumn Fun
We don’t celebrate Halloween as a family, so during October, on the 31st, we will either take our children to a fun Halloween-alternative party being held, or do something memorable with the children. You can do something you know they’ll enjoy – like taking them ice-skating, ten pin bowling or another age-appropriate way to spend the night doing something fun.
NOVEMBER : Fireworks night
Celebrate fireworks in your back garden or at another event.Make a fire and toast marshmallows or s’mores.
DECEMBER : Celebrating Christmas
Christmas is such a fun time – the lead up to it is just as exciting as Christmas Day itself. You can read Christmas stories with your children at bedtime as the countdown to Christmas begins, buy advent calendars (or make them), bake Christmas themed cookies, go see the Christmas lights and visit your best neighbours’ Christmas light display, watch a pantomime or visit a Santa grotto.
We have our own Family Traditions at Christmas-time : putting sacks with gifts at the bottom of beds while the kids are sleeping, eating mince pies and ice-cream by the fire on Christmas Eve, playing Christmas gift giving with dice and more….
We also have a Family Tradition for birthdays in our family, involving waking up the birthday boy/girl with balloons and gifts and cake for breakfast.
And about twice a month, we have FAMILY NIGHTS, eat sweet treats and popcorn and watch a family movie or play games as a family.
Don’t feel that you have to do something every month – these are just ideas. Pick a few or think of things that you want to do with your family. Family Traditions become fun memories that everyone will love remember with huge fondness, years from now.
Here’s to many fun times with your family!
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