Christmas Traditions. Many people climb up the attic stairs on Black Friday to gather the boxes of tinsel and lights, ornaments, and figurines. We, however, begin the season of Joy with a few dozen voices caroling the classic Christmas songs.
My father’s side of the family has had this tradition for so long that I actually have no memory of Thanksgiving Day spent any other way than around my Grandfather’s piano, song book in hand, bells at the ready (for the ever anticipated Jingle Bells) and about a few dozen family members, overly stuffed, but smiling and ready to belt out O Holy Night, We Three Kings, Adeste Fideles, etc.
Once appropriately stuffed, we sing. We sing about 15 songs, give or take, and allow the joy to take over our spirits. For several years running there was actually a competition for singing the 12 Days of Christmas. The fun for the tone deaf was kept in the annual “Who could sing the loudest” competition (and sometimes that meant “who could sing the most obnoxiously or offensively off key”). No award was won except the pride to know that you were the worst, I mean loudest.
Our night always ends with Silent Night. How appropriate. But I always long to hear my father sing O Holy Night. His lovely tenor voice hums all season long but it begins with his fantastically humble rendition of O Holy Night.
Traditions change over time…
A decade ago my Grandfather passed away. He was a pianist. He was spectacular. He held this tradition and our family together in countless ways but Christmas Caroling is one tradition that was so strong it kept going even with out him.
–I’d love to hear your favorite tradition during the holiday season–