Holiday Traditions

Holiday Traditions

Watching Hallmark movies has been a holiday tradition for many of us for a long time. And, despite the predictable plots and inevitable final scenes, we love to watch them. Sometimes, we watch the same ones more than once!

But, we must be careful! This tradition can become a harmful habit — one that could convince us that an idyllic Christmas can only be had in a small town in the Midwest or alongside a picturesque ski resort.

But, that’s not true, not true at all!

Take it from me, a city girl who was born and raised in a small town, it is possible to enjoy the same kind of memorable experiences (so often spotlighted on the screen) anywhere — even in Houston.

As a kid, time spent at the neighborhood skating rink with my friends was a treat. Every December, we would don our favorite  outfits of red and green and roll around and around the rink to the sounds of that classic favorite, Jingle Bell Rock.

Today, right here in H-Town, I can “relive” those same memories by putting on a warm and fashionable “ugly” sweater and heading over to Discovery Green to watch my grandkids ice skate. And, before long, as if it were yesterday, I hear that same ol’ happy tune. And this: “Grandma, how is it you know the words to Jingle Bell Rock? That song wasn’t around in the olden days. Was it?

Okay, so much for experiencing all traditions in the exact same way! Sometimes, change is good. Good for a laugh or tear, anyway!

When I was an adolescent, there was a family of five living directly across the street. Mother, father, a girl and two boys (eldest of the boys was my first boyfriend, by the way). The father loved to bake pecan pies, and each year we could count on him to walk over on Christmas Eve morning to give us one of his freshly baked delights. I still think of his pies every Christmas Eve. But, even more, I remember Mr. Phillips for his endearing spirit and the joy he brought to our family.

Currently, Angelo and Christy live across the street. They are empty nesters and dog lovers, like me. Last December, they were kind enough to give me a large bag of newly harvested oranges from a tree growing in their backyard. This morning, to my sheer delight, they did the same thing!

Like last year’s bounty, the oranges are big and beautiful, juicy and delicious! A new holiday tradition? I sure hope so!

In days gone by, as now, some of my holiday traditions include baking cookies, decking the halls, shopping, visiting friends and Santa Claus, singing Christmas carols and driving around to see the festive lights. Also, going to see a children’s pageant, A Christmas Carol and/or The Nutcracker Ballet. And, of course, going to church!

There are so many great things to love about holiday traditions. They can be enjoyed over and over again, with old friends or new and, most importantly, wherever in the world you are!

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