Traditions

Everyone has traditions on their mind this week. Assuming they’re not overwhelmed and/or worn out with last-minute shopping at malls and on Amazon. I’ve been hanging close to home, gift-giving and card mailing under control. Plus my driveway’s a mess, so better just to stay put. Most of my “traditional” Christmas customs are in place, plus a few new ones. Like the music. I listen to Mannheim Steamroller over and over, interspersed with Amy Grant and Jim Brickman. But I don’t forget Perry Como or Johnny Mathis – thank Goodness those oldies and goodies are on CDs these days!!! I’ve watched The Polar Express several times over the last week while putting up the tree and poking through storage tubs for the lights, garland, and favorite ornaments. IMG_4550 I put up Dad’s nativity set and used little branches trimmed from the tree to decorate the crèche, then strung tiny lights inside through a hole in the back Dad put in when he made the crèche many, many years ago. The little set of Mary, Joseph, baby Jesus, the wise men and shepherds with their sheep, even a donkey and camel, was a favorite childhood tradition. Then I got out Dad’s train set. IMG_4570This was not a Christmas tradition in our house growing up, but the train was a staple with us kids, brought out throughout the year as a treasured toy, as were Lincoln logs and tinker toys. And now it will be a tradition for the holidays at my house, whether I put up a tree or not. I love the sound the transformer makes, that little hum of power just before the tracks rattle and the little American Flyer is off and running.

I’ve let the already-mentioned tradition of cut out sugar cookies become a thing of the past. It’s never been as fun not doing it at Grandmother’s house, plus I have a little trouble eating the dough, okay, a lot of trouble eating the dough, so decided it’s best not to even go there, I have enough other bad holiday eating habits without adding sugar cookies. I’ve kept the tradition of getting out Grandmother’s corn bread pan, the one with the little ears of corn all lined up, and trying to make cornbread that doesn’t get stuck. I have fond memories of her crunchy little cornbread ears but I’ve never done it very successfully. I’m going to vary the tradition this year. IMG_4520 I’m making cornbread stuffing and will try making it in her cast iron muffin cups and see how that works. I’m making myself hungry here…

So to you and yours – have very Merry Holidays, however you enjoy spending them with the traditions that you hold dear or new ones to be carried into the future, giving thanks in all things!

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