Our family is untraditional. No, I don’t mean different or non-traditional — though we are likely that as well. I mean “untraditional” as in, we don’t have any. Or, rather, we don’t stick to any for very long. That may be mostly my fault – I like change too much. When Tevye sings the praises of tradition in Fiddler on the Roof, I’m thinking, “You need to get out more.”
But Easter is one of two Christian holidays we’ve tried on a tradition or two. Or three. We’ve decorated Easter eggs, planted Gardens of Gethsemane, made Rice Krispie Peep baskets and even Easter cookies that pop up to reveal an empty tomb inside. All fun stuff while the kids were growing up. Each, however, seemed to be only for a season or two. I guess it wouldn’t be appropriate to call these traditions, because they didn’t last. They were more like an expression. A way to celebrate Jesus’ victory over sin and death.
Yesterday, we resurrected one of those old traditions, if you’ll permit my use of that word. We made some Peep nests. Our now young adult children thought they were pretty cool — like they’d never seen them before. Admittedly, I didn’t remember those little yellow birds, either! There is a good side to being forgetful – you can experience the enthusiasm of a new activity again and again… and again.
I used to feel bad about being an untraditional family — like we’re not doing our job as parents. Then, I realized it’s not the continuity of an activity that’s important — it’s taking delight in the meaning of it that makes it worth doing.
SOUND OFF: What are some of the traditions or expressions your family has found helpful to celebrate Easter?