There was the extra seat we always left at the Christmas Eve meal table. This was set for the wise men on their way to Bethlehem. There was the special wafer or platek that was broke at this meal. We each broke a piece off of it and shared Christmas and New Years wishes with one another. It was a meatless meal at Wigilia, the Polish Christmas Eve meal growing up. Herring or another type of fish was eaten, usually with mushroom soup. Quite often, pierogis were also served. This special meal has got to be one of my favorite Christmas traditions from growing up. While not all of it is done each year in our home, we maintain aspects of it. The beautiful thing about traditions is the way in which they do dearly connect us to our heritage, our past, family, friends, and memories from growing up.
Sometimes our world today can seem a million miles away from traditional customs and our unique heritages. For many of us, the holidays are time when we connect to them. Some people I know are searching for new traditions for their families or at least different ones to make the holidays more personally meaningful. Traditions, whether food related or activity related are such important anchor points for are our families. Cozi.com, a website for today’s busy families, offers some great new traditions to bring to your family this year. From food traditions and gift giving traditions to volunteering and special family activities for the holidays, there are many great ideas here to ponder and perhaps implement. What are some of your favorite traditions? How do you make the holidays meaningful?