My kids desperately want traditions… well, at least my daughter does. She will try to make anything into a tradition. “Remember when we went out for pizza that night it rained really hard? We should do that every year.” The boy could care less about traditions. He just follows along, hoping there is a toy at the end of the journey.
I think traditions are great. Creating magical memories your kids can remember then pass on down to their kids is such a cool concept to me. I envy those who flawlessly provide their kids with Kodak moments on a yearly basis. Honestly, I would really love to have some more creative traditions other than the ones created for me – Christmas, Halloween, etc. Unfortunately for my children, most traditions involve two things that I lack the necessary skills for – preparation and memory. Now, its not like we don’t have any traditions, its just that I really suck at following through with them.
In order to have traditions, you have to remember the traditions…every year. I barely remember what month I am in, let alone the day so most of the man-made traditions like holidays seem to sneak up on me when I am not looking. I check the calendar, see I have a few weeks, and then BAM! Suddenly, I find myself putting up the Christmas tree so the f&@^$% elf will arrive and I can’t remember where I hid the F@%$#$ elf the year before. So I’m just about to head to Walmart at 10:45pm to buy a new F%#^$ elf so the kids don’t have to continue therapy into their senior years when I find it wrapped in a dish towel in my sock drawer. The sock drawer. WTF?!
Then there is the preparation involved in traditions. I hate prep work. I won’t eat tuna because it involves more then two steps. The idea of opening the can, draining it, breaking it up, adding mayo THEN making a sandwich is mind numbing to me. Since most of the time I have forgotten to eat and now I am at mach 10 on the hunger scale, my only option is to eat whatever is within reach and has a shelf life of two years. Preparing for holidays is right up there with tuna making – exhausting and most likely not happening.
My attic is filled with decorations for ever holiday known to man. I could decorate the entire neighborhood for Halloween, Christmas and Easter with the crap up in my attic. I keep buying stuff hoping that this year will be the year I will get my act together and actually set the stuff up. Then I turn around and Halloween is tomorrow so it seems pointless to drag seven plastic totes out of the attic to set up a myriad of spooky skeletons for just 24 hours. This year, I actually bought pumpkins to carve. One disintegrated into a pile of mush on the railing while the other is still hanging in there. I put a santa hat on it so it looks like it was all part of the plan.
I would love to give some traditions to my kids that they could pass on to their kids. Something that bring backs those warm fuzzy feelings of their childhood. As of now, the most I can give them is a pain in the ass elf who, more often then not, forgets to move, rotten pumpkins in santa hats, and a cache of nerf guns to use for an epic post Christmas day nerf war. Maybe it will be enough for them. Who knows. Or maybe one day, when they are grown, they will realize just how exhausting creating magical memories (and making tuna) can really be. And they too will say “Screw it!”