Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Ritual & Tradition

Evan and Amelie's folks tend to be nontraditional. In fact, I think we both pride ourselves on rejecting tradition sometimes, especially when said tradition just doesn't make any sense.

That said, I hunger to have rituals and traditions in our home, mostly for the childrens' benefit, but for us as a family as well. And I'm realizing that these traditions or rituals don't have to be highly spiritual or impressive to be valuable. They just have to be honest. There are some traditions in our house, and I guess it is important to recognize the ones you already have, in an effort to develop more.

It is a ritual in our house that the end of the day ends with stories and a cup of milk. I read a gazillion books (it feels like at the end of the day), and when they start to get sleepy, they have their milk. Once they finish their milk, it isn't long before they nod off.

Even the books themselves have their own ritual. Cookie's Week (a must at bedtime) is a book about a busy cat who gets into different mischief each day of the week. And various consequences ensue - Cookie knocked a plant off the window sill, there was dirt everywhere. Cookie jumps in a kitchen drawer, the pots and pans are everywhere, etc. Well now, I read what Cookie does, and Evan chimes in with the second part with much enthusiasm. He likes "helping" read a story, and I think he's proud of himself that he remembers all of it.

There are other book rituals. The last books are always The Going to Bed book by Sandra Boynton, Big Red Barn, and Bear Snores on. And recently I've been making more of a point to read one or two bible stories from one of the baby bibles their Godparents have given them.

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