Holiday Traditions...

FarmerJamie

Mr. Sensitive
Joined
Dec 22, 2010
Messages
6,208
Reaction score
2,597
Points
373
This isn't a vent, rant, or sad post....just processing some thoughts as this year and decade draws to a close....

My kids and their SOs will be spending the afternoon here tomorrow to celebrate our Christmas it just got me thinking on how not only by generation, but by year things change, no matter how we feel about the change.

Christmas 2012 was the last Christmas I spent together with my kids and now ex-wife. It was eerie as she planned to move out in a little over a week and it was the end of over a decade for all three kids with a "typical" Christmas morning. For me, there were decades of tradition prior to the marriage and kids as I grew up with the families doing the same thing every season. It was like clockwork.

Now, nine years later, not one Christmas has been the same. My now wife has had traditions up ended, too. Maybe the new tradition is having no tradition at all? We have spent holidays here alone, on the road to be with her family, sporadic get together times with the kids, visiting my relatives, and last year where I thought I might lose her to her health issues.

I am not lamenting the missing of a routine, It just feels "different". My aunt and her extended family continues the legacy of my grandparents with their brood dutifully getting together each year with individuals bringing their assigned contributions. Part of me is a bit jealous, but part of me says "how boring". For tomorrow, I am making some cheesy potato soup I used to make the kids prior to the divorce.

Is the passing of generational traditions a new thing, or am I just experiencing something new for me?
Just in a weird mood tonight, Not sure if any of this makes any sense.
 

Britesea

Sustainability Master
Joined
Jul 22, 2011
Messages
5,242
Reaction score
4,359
Points
363
Location
Klamath County, OR
We also have had Christmas traditions upended. First when DH's family apparently decided to cut us out of the family-- we haven't heard from them in over a decade, other than a couple of phone calls from his mom on her birthday (not on his, interestingly). Then my mother's dementia played merry he** with everything for several years. My 2 older children by a previous marriage live too far away to do more than a quick phone call on Christmas Day in between doing things with their SO's families and each other. So it's just us and our one autistic son- who doesn't do well with lots of changes anyway. Our house is too small and crowded for a Christmas tree, and we don't even bother to wrap gifts anymore except the 3 or 4 that I give to friends.
So for us, Christmas is mostly just another day, maybe with a nicer than usual dinner.
 

frustratedearthmother

Sustainability Master
Joined
Mar 11, 2012
Messages
16,878
Reaction score
10,378
Points
433
Location
USDA 9a
Is the passing of generational traditions a new thing, or am I just experiencing something new for me?

I do believe the saying that the only constant in life - is change. Some change is good and some change simply leaves you with an empty feeling. A lot of change seems to be preceded by loss of some sort. All we can do is keep on doing....
 

tortoise

Wild Hare
Joined
Nov 9, 2009
Messages
4,593
Reaction score
3,182
Points
357
Location
USDA Zone 3b/4a
Also upended here, but it has been good. Letting go of traditions that aren't beneficial and starting new ones.

Christmas cookies... not helping me. Quit that one. Intend to replace with making gingerbread houses, but we skipped that this year

Stockings... not good for my budget. Quit that one and family didn't mention it.

One year when I was a kid, my parents did 12 days of Christmas. Their execution was terrible, we kids didn't like it, and they never did it again. However, I did 12 days of Christmas for the second year this year and it helps so much for coping with DS12's ADHD/ODD. I like spreading it out too. This one is here to stay.
 

Hinotori

Sustainability Master
Joined
Nov 2, 2011
Messages
3,259
Reaction score
3,413
Points
323
Location
On the foot of Mt Rainier
It's changed for my family and will be changing again soon. I am the reason in part as we won't travel down for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. With how the passes get and temps freezing chicken water, Thanksgiving is better for us. My brother Joe this year has started getting Mom and Dad to go to his house along with my other brother's family. Mom can't physically stand to do the dinner well. I've had to do a lot of it after driving down the night before. Im not a really early morning person.
 

Lazy Gardener

Super Self-Sufficient
Joined
May 14, 2017
Messages
3,780
Reaction score
4,122
Points
262
Location
Central Maine, Zone 4B
Things have changed for us, and I'm welcoming the changes. When our kids were young, we did the whole Santa routine. As time passed, I became more and more uncomfortable with that: the whole commercialization of it, along with my spirit's clash: Santa vs. Christianity. Why, if we are celebrating the birth of Jesus, were we giving gifts to each other? Shouldn't we have been giving gifts to HIM?

Hubby does not like change. Nor does he like even the remote possibility of disappointing someone. So... it's taken many years to get where we are. Several years ago, we started exchanging names for a single gift for the adults. Still bought for the grand kids. This year, because of financial strain for us, and an other family member, I suggested that we dispense with adult gifts, unless it was something made, baked, or written. We bought gift cards for the kids. Worked well, and I was delighted with the low key enjoyment of the day, and season, as was hubby. What did I get for Christmas? Family time, a great meal, and a little bag of Muddy Buddies. What did I give: I made some muslin bags to dress up qt. sized jars. I had the grand girls decorate those bags. Then we filled the jars with nutrient solution and nestled a started lettuce plant into each jar. Each of the women of the family got a Kratky lettuce plant to grace her window sill and future sandwiches.

As for what I am seeing in the community: much less attention to decorating the yard for Christmas. In our area, very few houses are putting up lights any more. I think the current generation is too busy with the trappings of their every day lives to take on more tradition.
 

Mini Horses

Sustainability Master
Joined
Sep 2, 2015
Messages
4,167
Reaction score
4,718
Points
302
Location
coastal VA
Is the passing of generational traditions a new thing, or am I just experiencing something new for me?

It's just life. Some things stay, some things change. It's that way here, also. Part is from family loss & separation. Years back you didn't move far away and jobs were not like now. No internet, etc.

Financially, we decided years back to not exchange other than the young ones being gifted. Some years we have a big meal, others no. I think the last one was about 3 years ago now. Truly only myself, DS, DD & DGD in the immediate family now. We had breakfast together and then all "went their way". Yes, just another day in the sense of the commercial rush.

I have lovely memories of many, many, many years of Christmases. They are cherished but, only memories. Nothing much is like years past. It's like how I miss my grandmas wooden stove cooking, oil lamps and no electricity. Those are not things I want to convert back to, LOL, but I do carry on with garden and canning, etc. We evolve. You are possibly saddened by passing of family and their memories come flooding in. It's good to have memories. You are making new ones.

The reflections of past -- good or bad -- are what often make the holiday season so difficult for so many.
 

FarmerJamie

Mr. Sensitive
Joined
Dec 22, 2010
Messages
6,208
Reaction score
2,597
Points
373
I may have actually figured out part of it.

I am actually happy and looking forward to today. It's a weird feeling. Lol.
 

Latest posts

Top