Where traditions come from are a mystery to me. Certainly many of them are passed down from what our parents and grandparents did while we were growing up; other traditions may have been implemented when we heard about the idea from someone else, but then there are those traditions that just happened. There was no particular rhyme or reason. It just came to be a unique part of your family heritage.
We have a few traditions like this. One of the simplest traditions, that the kids talk about and look forward to every year, is balloons in their room on their birthday. I don’t mean colorfully exciting, mylar balloons, I mean get them out of the pack, blow them up yourself, and try to tie a knot without pinching your fingers off. The year and date this tradition began eludes me. I would guess it was when my oldest was having one of his first birthdays and I wanted him to understand that this day was different than all of the rest, so I blew up balloons and put them on his floor so that they would be the first things he saw when he woke up on his special day. Each year our children will wake up to find the amount of balloons equaling how old they are on their floor and they know the festivities are ready to begin.
Another time we share special traditions is during the time leading up to Valentine’s Day.
I love Valentine’s Day!
A day when I am reminded to reach out to family and friends to express my affection for them. A time when others share their love and care for me. A day when I eat a lot of chocolate. 🙂 I seem to mention eating chocolate a lot in my posts…I just can’t help sharing my love of this favorite treat! Anyway, moving on…
I cannot place where this Valentine tradition originated it is one of my favorite ways to love on and affirm my children. You can read my post on affirming one another here.
When February arrives I will cut 4 long pieces of ribbon and attach them to the kids’ doors. Then I cut out a pile of hearts to have on hand. Each night before Andy and I head to bed we will write a note about each child’s character, a positive trait we have noticed, or a fun observation we have witnessed on a heart.
The kids don’t always say much about them, but one night last week when we forgot to tape their heart on the doors the first thing the kids commented on when coming downstairs is that they didn’t have a new heart. Whether they talk about it often or not, we believe this is an important time for each of them to receive positive reinforcement, and to let them know we believe they are a unique and an incredibly important member of our family.
Our hearts don’t have to be filled with profound words, but rather simple traits we want our children to realize we have noticed in them. Attributes that we want them to know we have observed.
Those of you looking for a way to love on someone in your life, whether it’s your own children, your spouse, a roommate, a co-worker, your parents…consider sharing with them a character trait you have noticed or an action of theirs that you admire. You don’t have to hang a ribbon on their door (or their cubicle 🙂 ), although you certainly could. Maybe you just jot down a note or call them to share your words of love. Many times in my life, it seems that I receive words of love just in the moment I need them. Don’t hesitate. Grab your pen, your phone, or just take a moment to tell that special person living in your house how much you love them, and one of the reasons why.
1 Thessalonians 5:11
“Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”
HAPPY VALENTINE’S WEEK!
P.S. Don’t forget to eat some chocolate 😉