Building Family Traditions

Traditions give people a sense of belonging and a connection to their extended families. Generations ago, families spent more time socializing together, sharing experiences, making memories and building traditions. Today, people’s lives are so busy they often have to plan or schedule time to spend with family.

Building family traditions is possible even for the busiest of families. They don’t have to be big events or extravagant affairs. In fact, the most meaningful are often the simplest. The important thing is to build memories as a family by sharing a few familiar rituals that reinforce the importance of appreciating each other’s company.

Maybe your family would enjoy the following…

  • Sharing a regularly scheduled activity. Perhaps your extended family could share a weekend meal, game night, or outing together on a regular basis. Something everyone can count on, look forward to, and plan for in advance.

  • Create a secret family handshake. Make up a style of handshake only your family members know about. It could be something elaborate and complex or it could be something undetectable to other people outside the family.

  • Vacationing with extended family. Just knowing your family will share a vacation together each year helps strengthen bonds despite any distance that may separate you. It’s a great way for folks living in different parts of the country to connect in person and get to know each other better.

  • Volunteering together. Working as a family to help or benefit others can build camaraderie and inspire youngsters in the family to become caring adults who continue the tradition.

  • Passing down items with family history. Many older family members have items in their possession with some family history attached to them. These items can mean a lot to younger family members. Sharing these mementos carries their stories on to future generations.

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