As we move into the holiday season, think about the special memories that they hold for you. Can you remember your first Thanksgiving dinner? Who prepared the turkey? Did you have pumpkin pie? Or, was there a special activity reserved just for this day? Were you a part of the annual football game after dinner? These special memories are part of your family traditions.
Traditions are a key to strong families because they build strong relationships between generations. It may be by sharing the preparation of a special recipe. The important part is the conversation that takes place about who first made it and how this recipe tradition got started. Be sure to share your special memories with your children, grandchildren and friends. Traditions also make the holidays special just by bringing people together. Even though traditions are important, they can cause stress as well. Don’t be afraid to bend them a bit if necessary. Include traditions from all family members, even those who are new to the family and bring with them traditions that may seem foreign to you. Don’t become stressed by a tradition, make it fit your situation.
Here are some ideas for your Thanksgiving or other holiday traditions:
• Just because grandma made all the food from scratch doesn’t mean you have to. Don’t feel guilty about buying foods for a special meal, especially if time is a constraint.
• Use recipes that are simple or ones you are familiar with.
• Serve fewer foods.
• Let family members help, when someone offers to bring part of the meal, say yes.
• Remember others who are less fortunate than you by volunteering to serve a holiday meal, donating your time to a food pantry, or hosting a food drive.
Author: Linnette Goard, Field Specialist, Food Safety, Selection and Management, Family and Consumer Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, email@example.com
Reviewer: Liz Smith, Program Specialist, SNAP-Ed, Ohio State University Extension, North East Region