Growing up we didn’t have a lot of traditions but those we did have, we held onto fairly firmly. Having parents who were separated I spent a lot of time bouncing between houses on the holidays but I always had Christmas Eve at my grannies house. Every Christmas Eve for as long as I can remember, my granny has done snack night.
Snack night is when the family gathers at her home and has a night of food, family and laughter. When I was little, everyone would eat and then the kids would settle down to a movie while the adults played board games. I can remember watching from the living room and wishing I was big enough to join in. I counted down the Christmases like a child counts down the thanksgivings until they can join the adult table but at last, that day never came.
It seemed as my cousins and I became old enough to join in the fun, the traditions began to change. Though we still had snack night, the family no longer played bored games. In most cases, the family came together to eat and then split off into their little groups. The older us children became the less the adults seemed to hold onto those old traditions.
Now, I honestly can’t say that I remember the last time I saw my granny or made it over for her snack night. The reasons vary but in the end, after I had children and some falling out in my family, I was ready to start forming my own traditions. The last few years my household has been doing our own snack night. We have yummy finger foods and watch Christmas movies together before we head out with some hot chocolate to look at Christmas lights, just as my parents had done with my sister and I, after snack night at grannies.
Though, my home isn’t full of family or tiny cousins running and playing, as I’d like , it’s become our tradition that is growing and becoming better with each year. Maybe one day I’ll have a home full of family and friends that I laugh with, while kids run a muck and enjoy the simplicity of being kids but as rapidly as the years are passing, I don’t imagine that will ever be a reality – much like that little kids dream of growing up to join in on the eggnog and board game fun. As my mother always told me “you don’t always get what you want” but I can be happy and thankful for what I have, even if it’s just a little family tradition.