Friday, September 16, 2011

Things I Know: Traditional doesn't mean Old-Fashioned

I'm a big one for traditions. Be it religious, cultural or family traditions. I love the sentimental value and meaning it brings. Egg-hunting for Easter? Right on. Mooncakes & playing with lanterns for Mid-Autumn Festival? Yes, please. Waking up at 5.30am for 初詣 (hatsumoude, first shrine visit of the new year).......... errr, ok.

The boy and I at 初詣 2009年.

I think a lot of people mistaken being traditional for being old-fashioned, and are "ashamed" of practising traditions to keep up with the times. Kind of sad, really. True, some traditions should be abolished {like arranged marriages} but most are important pieces of our heritage. Traditions make a country, a culture special. Upkeeping the traditions just means that you appreciate the history and learnings from our forefathers. If they are lost and just become part of a faint memory, what legacy are we leaving behind to our children?

As it is, we are not living in "motherland" anymore. It is just so easy to brush aside cultural traditions so we try to incorporate them into our home so that the little pumpkin will grow to love them as part of her childhood memories, her identity, her life. She may not understand them now, but as she gets older, we will definitely explain to her the background behind each tradition. I don't want her to grow up as one of those young punks that think that traditions and customs are "uncool".

We are also trying to form our own special family traditions, in addition to the ones we learnt from our parental homes :) Something unique to us to keep us closer as a family, like every night we have a little family "chant" before we sleep {Good night, Sweet Dreams, Hug me always, Together forever!} or paint a little bauble every year for the Christmas tree. I like to think that the little pumkin will carry on with these family traditions and add on more when she forms her own family.

I believe that if we don't know where are came from, how do we know where to go? What traditions do you still follow? Do you have your own family traditions?

Playing along at Shae's and 504main today :)

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15 comments:

LOVE MELISSA:) said...

I love this post. I am a firm believer in family traditions. I am glad you are honoring your traditions.

nellbe said...

I love family traditions as well. We make sure we eat dinner every night around the dinner table and ask 'what was your favourite part of today'. Great way for encouraging conversation and makes them 'look' for the good.

Kellie said...

Oh, that little good night chant is beautiful. I think it's lovely to hold on to traditions from the past and to create some of your own. These are the things we remember. x

♥●• Izdiher·•●♥ said...

Can not disagree with you. Traditions are fun and healthy thing.It brings color in our life.

Follow each other .

shae said...

We have a few family traditions that we have started-we light a candle before dinner and have a special poem I say before bed.

Lee said...

Very true. Interesting distinction between traditional and old fashioned.

Anitra said...

I didn't have many family traditions passed down to me, so we're trying to create some for our kids. I'm hopping through from the Alexa hop and already follow you on GFC.

Samantha said...

your daughter is SOOO cute! and you are right- tradition is so important. i am following you back from http://www.havesippywilltravel.com/ thanks!

Nikki said...

Our family traditions mostly revolve around holidays. For example, we have the same special soup every Christmas, and only on Christmas. I'm a new follower from the Alexa hop. I love your blog. I lived in Japan for a little over 2 years and miss it like crazy. The cherry blossoms were one of my favorite things. I know we have them in the States, but they're just not the same here.

Angela said...

I completely agree! Traditions are very important. I am trying to create our own with my family as well and making sure my daughter experiences all our different cultures have to offer. Thanks for following Mommy Time Out

cricketscts said...

You are right, family traditions really important. One of the most important traditions that we try to instill in our family if being frugal and living with what we have. Cricket@ThriftyTexasPenny

Silverfaerie said...

The family I grew up in had very few traditions, and those were, well, generic in their own way. You know, celebrate the holidays that everyone else does, but with no real meaning behind them. Nothing that we did was specific to our ancestral ties or the families that my parents came from.

When I grew up and had my own child, it was a sad realization for me. I have since tried to incorporate some traditions because I feel that it is important. It's difficult though, because I know very little about my heritage, about the 'traditions' that my ancestral families did have at one time.

It's great that you want to keep that alive for your daughter. Knowing where you come from is extremely important. It helps you understand how your family got where they are today, the struggles they had to overcome, the joys that they shared.

New GFC follower from the Lots of Lovin' blog hop!

Patty Ann said...

Love this reminder today. I love family traditions and we have several. Many of ours involve extended family, but we have some of our own too. I love to have traditions for holidays. It gives the kids something to look forward to as every holiday approaches. It makes the season fun for them.

Ai Sakura said...

lovely to learn how you all feel about traditions and customs, and thanks for sharing on your own family traditions too! let's keep them going for our kids :)

Judy Haughton-James said...

Hi Ai,
I also believe in family traditions and my family and I follow them on special holidays like Easter and Christmas. The death of my twin almost made me stop decorating for instance but happily I managed to get over this and I am happy to now decorate with her favourite decorations. Have a great week.
Judy