Today’s prompt is of my own making.
Traditions: What are your Christmas Traditions?
The ladies are in the kitchen making toffee. The recipe they are working from is on a printout of email to me dated October 24, 2004. My wife and daughter are chatting away as they melt the butter and prepare the pan with nuts and dark chocolate chips. My recollection is that my former boss gave us some of her toffee in December 2003 and we asked for the receive the following year. My wife and daughter make the toffee every Christmas season and give most of it away.
On Sunday Laura and I will make another holiday favorite known as “Joan’s Rumballs”. I worked with Joan for about 20 years. Every year she would bring batches of rumballs and people would always joke about how strong they were as they walked away with 2 or 3. Joan emailed the recipe the Christmas before she retired, just a few months before she passed away. I haven’t had time to make them during the last few years, but they will get made this year.
When The Child was in Pop Warner Cheer I used to bring Joan’s Rumballs to practice to share with the other parents. They were always well received, especially during competition. They didn’t know about Joan, but after the first year, their eyes lit up when I brought them. The best traditions require sharing.
At the start of this next week, I will bring a batch of Joan’s rumballs into work. For some people who have been there a while, Joan’s rumballs will have special meaning. For others they will be just another sweet sitting out.
I guess that’s the second thing about traditions, they need context.
Christmas can be a socio-commercial exercise or Christmas can be a day of deeply moving spiritual and religious period of hope. It all depends on our context.