Holiday Traditions

Favorite Holiday Traditions: part 2

Holidays have a way of generating traditions. They vary from place to place, family to family, decade to decade. But all hold some special meaning, in their own way.

Here are some of my family’s traditions, which I share strictly for the purpose of reliving the good ole days of Christmas’ past:

Santa on a Spring

This tradition started years ago when we moved into an apartment. The previous tenants had left behind a rather devilish looking, red, triangular-shaped, furry Santa, about one foot tall. He had a flat bottom and no legs or feet, and coming out of the peak of his Santa cap was an 18 inch spring. Of course, it would have been nicer if they had left behind needlepoint Christmas stockings, but they didn’t.

We didn’t have much money to spend on holiday decorations, so we utilized “Santa on a Spring” by hanging him in the entryway door. Every person who came to visit was surprised, then bonked in the face as Santa recoiled and ricocheted at them; then they had to move around Santa on a spring to enter the apartment.

We interpreted this as having elements similar to the Advent season itself: it can sneak up on you and surprise you. People seemed to buy it, so ’nuff said, we thought. Today, our daughter has possession of Santa on a Spring and the tradition lives on.

Christmas Dinner

Years and years and years ago, before print was dead, I picked up a cheap barbecue booklet at the checkout stand of our local grocery. Sponsored by a famous charcoal company, the 60-some pages held beautiful color images of all the delicious meals you could cook on your grill simply by using this charcoal.

On page 26 was a recipe for Peppercorn Beef Tenderloin with Dijon Mustard/Balsamic Vinegar Cream Sauce. I made it one year, and let me tell you, it tasted a whole lot better than a Supima cotton towel.

When Christmas rolled around the next year, as it always does, the family clamored for a repeat performance. I obliged. And every year since then we have made it for our Christmas dinner. Nowadays the sons-in-law do the grilling and I supervise, but aside from that, little has changed.

You probably have similar traditions in your family; Christmas matching pajamas, meals your family makes, charities you support and so on. They make the holidays such a special time. Wouldn’t it be great if every day of year felt that special?

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