Today's guest blogger is Mary Beth from Live. Work. Design.
First off I want to thank Krysten for honoring me with a guest post on After I Do. I came across Krysten's blog at the perfect time, being just 7 months away from marrying my long time boyfriend and best friend Andy, in a haze of vendor emails, bridal magazines and guest list disputes I had forgotten what it was like before "the engagement." Krysten's "Life with Dustin" posts especially struck me. They got me thinking about the great moments Andy and I have shared together in our 5 years of dating, how it has brought us to where we are today and where it will take us in the future. So thank you for helping me put some sanity into all the insanity that is wedding planning. Now onto the post...
I am a big fan of traditions (as is Andy). Perhaps its my love of holidays and all things crafty. Ah, the fun rituals I remember as a kid: decorating Christmas cookies, dying Easter eggs, passing out May Day baskets.
As I've grown old I continue to keep the traditions my family celebrates close to me and continue to share those with Andy. A lot of my first memories of us dating includes beer, a front porch and sharing family stories with one another. I'd tell a story about my family Christmas and then he would counter with his own crazy version. In many ways I think our appreciation of tradition has been the foundation to our relationship.
With the wedding fast approaching, I try remind myself to look past the planning and focus on what's next in this new chapter for us as a married couple. But what does marriage really change? My last name I guess. I have had many conversations about this with girlfriends over the years. What's different? The same habits will still annoy us, we will continue to fight over control of the TV and Andy will still have to take out the trash. But what I do believe will change is the feeling that we are indeed a family unit, legally bonded by the state of Minnesota. I look forward to solidifying our own family traditions--picking and choosing our favorites from each of our families while creating our own new ones. In our 5 years together we have been able to get a head start on our own traditions. Here are some of our favorites...
Apple picking in fall (This is always followed by me making an apple pie when we get home.)
Carving pumpkins for Halloween (We have been known to stay up until midnight perfecting our gourds.)
Saturday morning breakfast (Andy will always cook an amazing breakfast (when we're not out of town)--it's the best in summer when we can enjoy it outside.)
St. Patrick's Day (with both of us being Irish, it holds a special place in our hearts and we have created our own version of corned beef and cabbage. Instead we make Rubens with roasted vegetables (cabbage is optional), green beer and of course soda bread.)
So here I sit writing this post as my soda bread (recipe) bakes in the oven. I even baked it a week early since I will be in California the week leading up to St. Patrick's Day and would not have time to do so when I get home. All of this planning and preparation for tradition? I thought about this so much I had to look it up, why are traditions important to us?
1. They provide stability, a sense of family history, and feelings of roots
2. They define the boundaries of the family
3. Traditions are important because they keep the generations in contact with one another
Ah ha, proof that I must continue the beer dying, soda bread making, Christmas cookie decorating, Egg dying and all the other traditions in hopes that one day we will have little ones to pass them onto. Besides, as I mentioned before I am a gluten for holiday craft projects.
What are your favorite traditions that you share with your loved ones?