Saturday, February 12, 2011

Re-Creating Family Traditions

When I was a little kid our family had a tradition called "family night." This nearly always happened on a Friday night, and it went something like this.

Everyone arrived home from school/work and began food preparations. Dad made homemade pizza crust and we all got to stake out our parts of the pizza that we put our own toppings on. My sister and I shared one pizza, my parents made the other. Somehow my folks' pizza became "pizza soup" because my mom loaded theirs up with so many toppings that the middle was a soupy mess. It apparently still tasted good because they managed to eat it, though they had to resort to forks.

Then dad pulled out the blender and began the challenging task of making milk shakes. It's a tough recipe: vanilla ice cream, milk, and a shot of Hershey's chocolate syrup. A few minutes in the blender and voila, milk shakes for all.

We would sit around sipping our milk shakes, trying to avoid a brain freeze, and pull out the games. We played Clue (Professor Plum in the study with the candlestick), Monopoly (can we just quit now?), Aggravation, Uno and whatever else we wanted. Eventually family night would be over and my sister and I would put our matching nightgowns on, brush our teeth and go to bed.

We tried to schedule a family night at least once a month, probably more, until we got to the age when friends and school activities took priority over family night, when it was no longer "cool" to hang out with our parents.

Fast forward 30 years.

Last evening we all got home from school/work and Wayne had already begun food preparations. We sat down to a fabulous steak dinner, and then I pulled out the blender.

In went the ice cream, the milk and chocolate syrup, and then we sat around sipping our milkshakes. Marissa managed to suck down two of them and avoid a brain freeze, and Lindsey tormented Dax by blowing bubbles into hers while sitting right next to him.

Then we played Uno Attack until two little girls' eyes began drooping and they could no longer stifle their yawns. Up to bed they went in matching jammies, brushed their teeth and went to bed.

I love that I can take the favorite parts of my childhood and re-create those memories for my children. I hope they enjoy them as much as I do.

1 comment:

  1. Let's never forget Hungry Hungry Hippos!!