Mini traditions

Parker at our Starbucks breakfast date.

Parker at our Starbucks breakfast date.

When Sterling and I first started our family, we (probably mostly I) were dead-set on instituting FUN FAMILY TRADITIONS. I was so gung-ho about establishing and carrying out those TRADITIONS that, in some instances, I plumb wore myself out. It's taken me many years to learn the beauty of simplicity, and even now I have a penchant for taking the easy and beautiful and turning those elements into a 36 hour, gut-wrenching, sweat-laden PROJECT. It's a weird part of me that I'm trying to squelch.

Some of those old traditions have stayed with our family through childhood and into the teen and young adult years (my kids are still expecting a glass ornament every year), and some have understandably fallen by the wayside (we have a great Christmas picture book collection that no one will let me read to them!). Some traditions have come and gone and come again (like delivering the 12 days of Christmas in secret to an unsuspecting family). But I've found lately that it's been fun and satisfying to institute mini-traditions -- things we do for a season without any pressure to continue until the end of time.

For instance: For the first two months of school Parker had a cross country meet every Wednesday after school. Sterling, Becca, and I drove out, watched him run, and then brought him home with us. Because we had a limited window between the meet and church that night, we instituted Chick-Fil-A Wednesdays. Each Wednesday, after the meet, we'd drive through Chick-Fil-A and pick up dinner. Everyone looked forward to Chick-Fil-A Wednesdays (especially me because it meant no cooking). Guys, do you see what I did there? I made the Chick-fil-A drive-thru a tradition by giving it a name! It was easy, and my kids still talk about it. Are you getting my drift? Making memories through easy traditions! I'm going to write a book: 200 Family Traditions That Require Absolutely No Work on Your Part.

Bestseller, right? 

Here's another good one that fell right into my lap: When a cold front blew through recently Parker asked if I'd take him to Starbucks for hot chocolate before school. His school doesn't start until 8:15, so it's fairly easy to throw him in the car at 7, have a lovely hot chocolate and muffin at Starbucks, and deposit him at school afterwards. And he was so appreciative. I'm thinking maybe every other Friday until Christmas? I'll call it Made-It-to-the-Weekend Hot Chocolate.

And voila people! Traditions and memories without stress or hot glue gun burns.  

What about you? Any fun (and stress-free) traditions you can share with us? Please! I need them for my book!