Friday, November 20, 2009

Giving Thanks for Traditions...

With Thanksgiving less than a week away, today I'm giving thanks for Traditions.  The turkey is on order, grocery list complete, table is set, Christmas cards secured, and I'm counting the hours till the house swells with family and I'm tuning in the MACY'S THANKSGIVING DAY PARADE!

The Virgo in me springs to life with the careful planning and structured activities of the holidays.  As a working person, in order for me to preserve what precious little sanity I have left (don't laugh) AND enjoy the holidays, all preparations/festivities from November through Jan 1 must be scheduled with military like precision. 

Holidays are to be enjoyed, right?  Therefore, One.Must.Plan.

Designing menus, scheduling the grocery shopping (as you all know, if you need crushed pineapple or canned whole cranberries, you better know where to go and when), selecting gifts, decorating the house and updating the Christmas card list are all "fun for me" holiday activities.  However, one of my favorite memories of the holidays is from the early years of my life as a new step-mom.

When my youngest stepson was little, we did lots of crafts together.  When I cross stitched, he cross stitched. When I decorated cakes, he decorated cakes.  We really had lots of fun together and came to know each other better through crafting. 

One year, around the holidays, we thought it would be fun to make candles together so for some reason or another, the day after Thanksgiving became our "candle making day".  We used old Tupperware parfait glasses as molds to make tree-shaped green wax candles, then whipped white wax which we randomly applied to the green candles making them look like they were snow laden.  If we hadn't eaten all the silver non-pareils (who remembers those?!) by the time we got around to making the candles, we'd stick some of those into the white wax before it set, you know, to spiff them up a smidge.  Then, when our little forest of candles were cool, we'd carefully store them until Christmas Eve evening when we would light the family room with nothing but those candles and the Christmas tree.  The glow was so beautiful!

Even though our post-Thanksgiving candle making sessions have long gone by the wayside, I'll never forget the fun we had making them and beauty they gave us on Christmas Eve.

What fun, crafty, maybe atypical, holiday traditions do you and your family enjoy?

I plan to pop back in with a stitching update between now and Thursday, but if I get crazy and don't, I hope your Thanksgiving is filled with love, comfort, family and tradition!

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