I’m a sucker for a good family tradition. I think that family traditions mark time in a most meaningful way. My family had a few traditions. The one I remember most vividly was our yearly ski trip to the Sierras with three other families. We saw each other only once a year but I still feel a strong connection to those kids. We made that trip for 13 years and it was our longest-standing family tradition.
I was so inspired when I came across Forty Years of the Hike by audreyG26. The book chronicles a forty-year family tradition of walking together to the town reservoir on Thanksgiving morning—rain or shine. Audrey writes, “The old pictures were fading and so were our memories of some of the people. I wanted it all in one place to enjoy for years to come.”
I don’t know these people but I was near tears by the end. On the back cover there’s a picture of Audrey as a baby sitting in a backpack on her grandfather’s back and she writes that now she carries her own sons. I grabbed the Kleenex. This stuff gets me every time. The book starts out with a scan of the original typed invitation from 1968 and a page of text explaining the tradition and its origins.
It even includes a description of the “scotch remedy” to get walkers warmed up, the “egg and ham in bag” breakfast and the tradition of walking the loop clockwise. A few years are missing but the book maintains a sweeping sense of history and heritage, all now preserved in a photo book.
What are your treasured family traditions and how will you keep them alive for future generations?
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