:: 33 Not Holiday Family Traditions ::

So, what's so important about family traditions you ask? Just about everything. It's all about your individuality as a family unit. Celebrating both the big and the little things in life and doing it together. It not only brings families closer, but as children become adults, they tend to carry on those same traditions to their own families, and so it continues. It's funny how that happens, but it really does. What kinds of things you ask, well, all sorts. And below, I'm giving you some examples of  traditions that my family enjoys all the time. We really do treasure tradition. I'm not including any holiday traditions in this one, just the good old every day traditions that we love. The holiday traditions I'll do later on. Enjoy!

Family Movie Night! This should go without saying. Whether it be watching a great new movie, or spending a day binge-watching a series on Netflix, certain items are a MUST. Such as, Pizza, salad, popcorn, Beer and other assorted drinks, and perhaps even some good company to help enjoy the day.

On a Very Chilly Evening! Out of the blue, the weather turns really cold. There is nothing more comforting than a batch of just-out-of-the-oven cinnamon rolls! Yummy! Everyone enjoys this on a cold night-it warms you right to your soul!

The Weekend Family Breakfast! Usually occurs on Sunday, but it can be on a Saturday as well of course, this breakfast consists of eggs, bacon, sausage, hash browns orange juice and toast, or a specialty like homemade waffles, french toast or Bagels and different flavored cream cheese. Or, it could be a variety of Omelets. Or, southern biscuits and gravy with a side of grits! Nothing beats a huge family breakfast. It marks a slow and easy day, just the thing everyone needs to include in their weekend plans. It is so necessary, that there are even times that our family will enjoy this as a dinner as well! Everybody loves a big breakfast!

The Family Meal  Now, this may seem a little weird to some people, but we take dinner time quite seriously in our home. The table is beautifully set, inside, or, outside, doesn't matter, everyone is cleaned up, the prayer is said, and we all dig in! Conversation is the main key here. There are no electronics at the dinner table. None. And, when we are done, we all pitch in to clean up in a matter of minutes! This is a special time in everyone's day to unwind and talk about their day. How else will you know what's going on in everybody's life, really? Plus, conversation is an important tool for children to learn. Not texting.

The Nightly Walk This one is an easy one to adapt. After dinner, you go for a long, leisurely walk. Allow yourself to be immersed in the sounds of the night,  the sight of the sun as it sets in the sky, the neighbors out talking and saying hello to each other. This a great way to meet the people who live in your neighborhood,  and an excellent way to end the night. 

Bed time stories/evening prayers  So this hits home for many people who have young children, or have their nieces, nephews, and grandchildren over often. It is an important ritual indeed, and one that my family takes very seriously and one to which we are all committed to. It is the perfect time to teach bible stories to children, and to have them think about all the things that they are grateful for, and of course to say prayers for the special people in their lives. Very important ritual.

Family Game Night  It can't be beat! And, it's even better with friends and relatives. Monday nights are a really good night for this one because it gives people a reason to look forward to Monday's instead of dreading them!

Taco Tuesday (or, better known as Mexican food Night) There is one of these at least weekly at out house! It can be tacos, tostadas, quesadillas, whatever the mood calls for, but, it's Mexican food night for sure!

The Family BBQ It doesn't have to be BBQ'd but, it sure has to be grilled! Who doesn't look forward to their family get togethers, picnics, family reunions and so forth. Plan one today-don't lose track of distant family-you'll surely regret it if you do. In the summer, because it's so hot here, we grill dinner a lot outside. Throw on a meat of some kind, add a delicious salad, some bread and you're all set!

The Family Bonfire This is a wonderful way to gather with the family, roast marshmallows, make s'mores,  tell stories, or just spin a yarn, have a couple of drinks, listen to some soothing music and get good and sleepy! For our family, this usually occurs on Friday but more likely Saturday nights.

Restaurant Night  At least once, every two weeks go out to eat at a restaurant you've never been to. Why? Because for one thing, it's "DATE NIGHT"! and two, because it's too easy to get stuck in that rut of "We like it so we go there all the time" syndrome. Don't do it. Somewhere. New. Every. Two Weeks. Understand?

The day of going thru old family photos, videos, films, and slideshows! Oh, my... to see myself again as a baby, a child, a young girl, a young woman, a grown up, and on and on. And all my siblings, all my relatives. Some, they are gone. It is so wonderful to stare into their beautiful faces and shining smiles once again-even if only for a day. One day, my children will look at my pictures this way, and remember me and the good times that we had. Precious memories, to be shared at least once a year with the entire family. Lots of laughs are had at these! We sure did look funny when we were young!

Strawberry Picking Day And the joy of making strawberry shortcake for dessert, or strawberry jam, strawberry pie, or, well, strawberry everything for a while! Who doesn't love picking strawberries! It doesn't have to be strawberries either. We have been known to pick blueberries as well as oranges and mushrooms, and other things too. Is there anything better than farm to table meals?

Flea Market/Art Show Fun Day Everybody needs one of these. Filled with handmade, beautiful things, very odd things, funny things, there is literally something to be found for everyone at one of these! We generally go to the one in Webster City Florida on Labor Day. Why? It's only open every Monday every week of the year. Weird isn't it? And the Art shows. To die for, beautiful creations by artists from all over, who can pass up a day of wandering and looking (and picture taking?)

Italian Night (Better known as pasta night around these parts) and, it generally happens at least once a week also. It could be spaghetti, lasagna, mac and cheese, Alfredo, but it is delicious without a doubt!

The Sunday Dinner with the Family No, it isn't always roast beef and carrots and potatoes, although, it is quite often! It's baked ham, and so many other delicious Sunday meals. My favorite: Homemade fried chicken. They do it right here in the south! I'm also partial to grilled steak {LOL}

The spend your day in your pajamas day This is an all out lazy day at it's finest folks. I live for these days because they don't happen too very often around these parts. But, when they do! It's a free for all. You can sleep all day, craft, read a whole book in one day, snack all day long, order in food (cause you're not cooking or cleaning) yes, a free day! Yay!

The all snowed in/terrible weather day Now, obviously I no longer suffer from snow days, however, we can have some pretty bad storms around these parts. And when they happen, it's all about comfort. That means comfort food, a slow paced and relaxing day that you simply play by ear. No hurries, and no worries. Just relax the storm will pass all too soon.

The Birthday/Anniversary Party- When you have family, there is no getting around this one. And, if you have a big family, this happens pretty often! The best reason to celebrate! It gives us a chance to single out that special family member and make them the most special person in the world for the whole day!

Homemade Doughnut Night This is so much fun! Mostly, we make glazed doughnuts, but it really doesn't matter what kind you choose-just do it! Anytime, morning, noon, or night-it's a great treat!

The Spa Day Some of us gals like to get together and have a homemade spa day complete with a facial, manicure, pedicure, deep hair conditioning, you name it, and it is a blast! Dance music on... it's a full blown party complete with healthy fruits and veggies, and NO MEN!

The Family Weekend Trip Well, we take all kinds from canoe trips to riding down the river in inner tube trips, to horseback riding, biking, hiking, all kinds. We all have a blast. Especially together.

The Spontaneous road trip  Now this family trip could be anywhere. It could be an afternoon trip to the nearest IKEA store, or anywhere. One time, we decided we could only pack our personal hygiene stuff and nothing else. When we got to the city we had chosen, we went to the local thrift store and bought clothes to wear for the weekend-that was the challenge. Everybody loved it, and I must say, some people wore things you would never see them in again ever! A spontaneous road trip is a lot of fun, and one in which you should be willing to drop everything and just go have some fun. Try it. You'll really like it!

A Night at the Fair Now, there are quite a few fairs that we attend annually around these parts. We go to the Florida State Fair in Tampa, The Strawberry festival Fair in Plant City, and our Church also sponsors fairs twice a year. It's not only a great time for the whole family, but it's the food! Funnel cakes, and deep fried twinkies, cotton candy, and corn dogs on a stick! I have no problem eating all of this food and then going on the roller coasters. None whatsoever folks.

The Pool Parties! We have so much fun all through the hot season in our pool! Family members constantly drop by for a swim, and it always leads to so much fun and many more games, eating el fresco, gilling, bonfires, etc. There is always constant activity around the pool, all spring, summer and fall long. And, that is not a bad thing. It is just a busy thing.

The 2AM Snack Run It's possible that many of you have no idea what I'm talking about here. You sleep through the whole night, never suffering from insomnia, never waking up hungry, not this chick! Yikes! Some of my most fun moments have been these middle of the night food runs. Sometimes we actually go out to eat at 2am you never know. We might go to an all night breakfast house, or drive through a burger place, but this happens pretty often and I highly rate it as a good time. You'll be able to go to sleep once your done trust me!

Ice Cream Night! In my home, this occurs every Sunday evening like clockwork. Why Sunday? I don't know except that in my parents home, and in my husbands home that is what they did. See what I mean? Traditions do carry on.

The Art Outing  Now, this is a newer one for my family and friends, although it one that we enjoy so much, we've made it a new tradition. We will go together as on outing to a Vino Van Gough paint night, to a wreath-making afternoon, to a mosaic garden rock adventure, and on and on. As a family, we go out and get artsy-fartsy! We all take an arts and class lesson of some kind. It's very fun, you always learn something new, and you take home an original made by you! Can't beat that!

The Beach weekend  I'm not gonna lie. This is one of my favorites! Spending the days on the beach, collecting sharks teeth, sea shells, and ocean glass, laying out, swimming, spotting dolphins, and eating lots of fresh fruit, and Publix subs, and drinking tons of sparkling water, under our gigantic tent, {where most of the men hide out and nap}, with all of our umbrellas surrounding it, and then at night, going to our favorite restaurant, followed by a late night stroll along the dark beach with only the moonlight to see, as we listen to the drums that play every Saturday night. {this has been going on, longer than I have been alive} It is such a good time for everybody to relax, get some much needed salt air and salt water, and it makes you feel alive again. being near the ocean, keeps you in check. Believe it.

The yearly deep fishing trip  Now this one, believe it or not, just includes the men in our family. It's normally at this time that the women get together for our Spa Day! So, everybody's happy!

The fresh, homemade cookie night  This could happen at any time that it's needed. And that could be at any time, any night! But is there anything better than warm cookies and milk before going to bed? It brings out the inner child in all of us. Plus, it's totally delicious! Warm. Cookies.

The Family Trip To Walt Disney World  Living 30 minutes away from Walt Disney World is both a good and a bad thing. It's good, because we can get there or to any theme park like Universal or Sea World very quickly. The bad thing is of course the traffic this area spews onto all surrounding communities. Having said that, we all enjoy the theme parks together whenever we can fit in, usually during the winter months when there is not as many crowds. But, it's fun anytime really. 

Attending Concerts  We do this together as well, be it a rockstar, a gospel group, whatever, we all love music and attend all kinds of music concerts together. We are lucky living here to have seen so many wonderful bands. Plus, it's a great way to introduce children to a variety of different music.

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