Family is number one to us, and I want my children to always know and trust that. Having family traditions is very important, especially when children are small, as you grow with one another and continue to create these special memories together. My dream is that our five kids look back on our family traditions and are proud to share those special memories centered on our on unique traditions.
My favourite part of family traditions is that they are so unique to each family and they can evolve over time. So I thought I’d share here just a few of the benefits of family traditions, as well as some ideas that I have learned from my own parents, other parents, and just some of our own fun ideas!
Benefits of family traditions
Having family traditions, even small ones, is crucial for bonding as a family and creating strong ties with one another, especially siblings. If you think back on some of your favourite memories growing up, how many are centered around ‘I remember when my family used to..’ That is something truly special and reinforces family values.
Traditions set a sense of consistency, comfort, and family cohesiveness that kids can rely on and trust as they grow up, change, and remember that their family is always there for them.
After all, life can get hectic! Family traditions give everyone a sense of, ‘I know and I trust that this time and effort will go towards family time’.
Best ways to make new family traditions
Here are a few things to do together as a family that can help you establish new family traditions.
Create a ‘movie night’ one night per week (or other time period that works for your family)
On streaming platforms like CHILI for example, there are a lot of animation movies that kids have can fun looking through and choosing from together. You can even switch things up sometimes too and have a fully-themed night centered around your movie night tradition. For example, if you watch Frozen, you can do snowperson arts and crafts and make yummy themed snacks.
Choose an annual trip that you all make together
Say your family enjoys camping.. choose a destination to go to every year or simply make a commitment to all go camping together once a year! It can even be a camping in the backyard adventure! The point is, your kids and the parents will always have this outdoor experience and adventure to share together.
Make a quote jar
A fun tradition to carry on throughout the years, that you will always have to look back on, is a quote jar! Any time a family member says something especially funny or memorable, write it on a slip of paper, date it, and drop it in the jar! Every few months or every year, get together and read quotes from the quote jar and you’ll be sure to all get some giggles!
First day of school photos
Now this isn’t something particularly unique, but it is so much fun to do! Take a first day of school photo of your kids every year, preferably in the same spot or setting, so you can have photos side by side in order for the years to come.
Set a birthday tradition
Birthdays are an especially holiday to celebrate amongst the family and you can really tailor the tradition as the years come by. One idea is that the birthday person can choose where to go out to eat, everyone else makes the birthday person breakfast in bed, etc.
Go for a walk around the block after dinner together
Going for a walk some time after dinner (or any other time) is a special time that you can share together outside and in open spaces. It’s also a great way to get your kids into healthy habits!
Annual day to give back
A day dedicated to giving back is a fun way to get your kids involved and passionate about causes that matter to them. You can have them brainstorm ways they’d like to give back leading up to it, then choose one as a family or dedicate some time to each.
Dinners at the table
Now I understand that having dinner as a family at the table may not be feasible every night, (though it is the dream!), this is a great tradition to carry whenever possible. You could also set Sunday night as the dedicated family dinner night!
What are some of the traditions that you and your family love to carry on? Or ideas that you would like to adopt as your own?
This post was written in collaboration with Mary Davis