By Colleen Brunetti, M.Ed., C.H.C


The holidays are a wonderful time of year to bring out cherished family traditions and begin to share them with your child.
From favorite dishes served at a special meal – to the music played, to the way gifts are given – how we celebrate with family is likely steeped in tradition. While your child is caught up in the whirlwind of holiday excitement, take some time to also slow things down and explore together why you do what you do.


Generations: Begin with a grandparent, or an older friend or neighbor, that your child has a special relationship with. Invite this person to share stories with you and your child about how they grew up. What sorts of traditions did they have? What do they remember? Can your child try out one of those traditions with them today? Don’t let distance be a factor! With technology, the gap between miles is small.


Your Memories: What special traditions did you enjoy as a child? Children absolutely delight in hearing about that time “long ago” when Mommy or Daddy was little like them. Tell stories of your childhood and the memories you hold dear, and invite your child to try some of them with you.


New Traditions: Integrating family traditions into your holidays and special occasions are a beautiful way to carry on important times from your family. But don’t be afraid to add a few new ones to your practice as well. Whether they are child-led and created, or you get a burst of inspiration from Pinterest, starting new traditions now set the stage for your child to carry on in creating their special ways of celebrating and spending time with family too.


As you work your way through the generations, traditions, and celebrations, make a connection for your child as to why they are so important. Are they unique to just your family, your culture, or your faith? Share with your child how these traditions reflect their rich heritage in so many ways!