In a previous post I talked about the ways in which family traditions create closeness, build memories, and foster a feeling of belonging. This week I received a lovely e-mail from my brother about two traditions that have developed in his family. Andrew graciously gave me permission to share. I hope you enjoy this story as much as I did
I was talking with the girls about your family traditions posting around “The Games.” We realized we have two more traditions in our family and both are very unique.
The Family Call
Our first is described as the family call. It’s something we first developed to use when we are out and about as a family. This tradition has gone way further than we could have imagined and is now the standard. When we are out and become separated from the rest of the family we let out a single parrot style shriek. On hearing this the other members of the family reply with two similar shrieks. It sounds really strange, but it is extremely effective when trying to locate members of the family. It does however take courage to do the call when shopping and we certainly get strange looks! The last time I used it we were camping with the extended family. One of the aunts wanted to find all the cousins and so I demonstrated “The Call,” both my girls duly responded and we located them in a flash. The girls have a real sense of pride when doing this.
Our other tradition that is gaining popularity is what we call “Dares”. It all started when we had to go shopping and daughter number 1 put on a serious funk, as she would rather pluck out her eyes with a rusty spoon than go shopping. In a flash of inspiration I said, “Come on it will be fun, I will give you some dares.” It’s grown from there.
An example of a dare would be to hide in some clothing hung up in a store and pop out when people are looking through them to ask where the toilet is, or to go into a shop that only sells white things and ask them if they do something in purple.
For one dare I challenged the girls to make a “honk” noise at the beginning of everything they said whilst in a model shop. Hilarity ensued! Daughter number 1 went up to the counter and inquired, “HONK, can you tell me where the model paint is kept?”
The man behind the counter took her to the stand and then asked what colors she was looking for. She replied “HONK, a green one” and so it went on. She then honked and asked me a question and I had to HONK and reply. This went on for a good 5 minutes, even daughter number 2 got involved and this dare provided hours of laughter and discussion afterwards.
So there you have it, traditions bring everyone together for sure. I will have to be careful with “dares” and make sure I stay in control!
Editors note: I can just imagine the scene in the store! Can you imagine the wonderful memories that were created that day? This is the kind of story that will be told and retold many times over.
Do you have any unique traditions in your family? Would you like to tell your story? I’d love to hear from you.
This is a post in the series Choosing to Connect, true life stories from my readers in their own words. If you would like to participate click here for details.