Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I had to give this post a title, and I almost choked on the word "tradition" because it's so cheesy! I spent too much time trying to think of something else, but there really is no way around it... that's what this is about...
Today I stopped over at my grandparents' house with the kids, so Lucy could contribute some artwork to the slider mural... which is a Halloween tradition that goes back for about 25 years. I didn't paint anything, and there is still some unpainted areas that will be taken care of by my cousins throughout the rest of the week. My grandma paints most of the outlines and the kids fill them in. When I was younger I looked forward to helping out. For a while, painting the haunted house was kind of a special honor. This year it was done by my cousin's girlfriend... my how times have changed! Maybe just because there are so many more of us! Whatever, she did a good job. It's blue and purple. I like it. Grandma always gets really into holidays and makes them so special, and it's cool to see my own children getting to experience the same things.

Check out some of these oldies with the very same slider, at my grandparents' house in Grandville, where my mom grew up.

We always did the trick-or-treating in their neighborhood because Kelly and I grew up in the "country" (read: Walker) and there were very few people home handing out candy on Halloween...that is, if you were willing to walk long distances down a curvy road in the woods, and walk up the long driveways to houses that were most likely empty at the time. My parents set out a basket of full-sized Snickers bars and almost every year they would come home and the basket would still be full. Now I live in the 'burbs and we will be able to take our kids trick-or-treating around our own neighborhood, which we plan on doing with Lucy this year. We'll still stop by my grandparents' earlier in the afternoon though, because it's tradition (and there's barbecue). If you are familiar with this family... you'll get the tradition joke (as in, "Take some gum... it's tradition."). They're big on tradition... but then again it is nice that they take such joy in these things, even if it goes a little overboard sometimes.

And, I suppose we may be guilty of it too, as new parents. We think about little traditions we could start, blueberry picking, Pronto Pups in the summer, Post Farms in the fall, whatever the case may be. Also the ones we remember that we want to continue. I still feel the need to listen to the Dolly Parton & Kenny Rogers "Once Upon a Christmas" album when decorating Christmas cookies... I guess the whole idea is to hopefully see that activity carry on throughout as many years as possible. If it's a good one, and the kids grow up with it, they might just pass it on to the next generation, because it brings back such good memories. So in that respect I guess my grandparents have gotten it right.


Kelly said...

Hah! Tradition. That's cool. I miss the barbeque, even if it does have carrots in it. :) I didn't even see myself in that pictures from '87 where I'm a cat until I read the caption and looked again. WHAT WERE WE (MOM) THINKING?!

Mindy said...

PS a headstone in the graveyard said "OBAMA" on it. I didn't get a close look at the epitaph but I'll look Fri. to see what it says! Hmmm who are they voting for? ;-) I know - you're invisible girl in that cat costume.

Heath said...

Aaahh traditions, I am posting here because it is tradition. I can vouch, first hand for the gum tradition. I have partaken in many of your family's "traditions" without even realizing it sometimes! :) I will say this though. It is good to have traditions and to make new ones. It reminds us all of where we come from. I always have to go out and cut down a Christmas tree the weekend after Thanksgiving because it was tradition with my family. No matter how unbelievably cold it was I was always super excited to bundle up and pick out a tree, have some hot cider. Its why it would be hard for me to get an artificial tree.