Monday, November 28, 2011

Honoring Tradition is a Thing of the Past

Thanksgiving at Grandma’s… There is nothing quite like it.  In our early married life, we made the trek to Grannie Obrian’s house situated on a half section of land 10 miles north of Lazbuddie and 20 miles east of Bovina.  Grannie was a hard working lady.   She knew how to put together a Thanksgiving feast.

 It never occurred to Grannie Obrian that you could buy pre-made pie shells in the frozen food section at the grocery store. At Grannie’s house, gravy did not originate from a package. And Grannie Obrian was equally oblvious to the existence of Cool Whip. She whipped her own cream to put on top of one of her wonderful pies.  As the men passed around the bowl of the freshly whipped delicacy, they joked that it would just ruin that pie.

You know we always went to Grannies knowing exactly what to expect. There were no variations.  Time held holiday traditions remained fundamentally unchanged for decades at the farmhouse they called home.

I firmly believe that there is something inherently good about going to safe places with safe people, where we know exactly what to expect. It gives us a remarkable feeling of security. In a world that is changing at a rapid fire pace everyday, we find ourselves drawn to safe places.  I can’t help but be sad as well as nostalgic when I think about Grannie O’Brian now.  She died very unexpectedly when we had only been married about 3 years.  My children never got to experience Thanksgiving at her home.  Her husband lived well into his 90’s.  But Papo is gone now too.

Now it is my turn to create a safe place for my children.  A home where traditions will be honored and family members affirmed.  I am probably going to buy some Cool Whip occasionally, but we still expect Jan to make homemade pie crusts and stir up some cream gravy from scratch.  The boys expect her to make pumpkin dump cake and a few other specialties.  But we don’t mind.  We want home to be a place for our sons where they know what to expect.

Some would say that kids these days don’t value tradition. Some would say that honoring tradition is a thing of the past.  Some of my peers would argue that I am wasting my time trying to uphold family traditions.  But that is not true.  Not at all… I found that to be the case this past weekend when two of our three boys were home.  Something very interesting took place.  I will share  that incident in Part II tomorrow. 

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