Rituals in Your Family Circle

Our family takes a Finnish Sauna every Monday night, boys and girls separate of course. We work in our yard together on Saturday mornings. We eat pulla bread for breakfast every Sunday morning (see recipe here tomorrow). Family prayers always take place on our colorful, round rug from Garnet Hill. We ask and answer The Question at the dinner table. After Sunday dinners, we take a walk together—the same route every time.

Creating ritual in the early years of the United States was as important as creating rules of law:

Ritual—defined as “a public ceremonial affirmation of community”— satisfies a deep collective human need . . . The only ritual built into the American system is the presidential inauguration, as decreed by the Constitution. Through its First Lady (Dolley Madison) the United States took its first tentative steps toward constructing national rituals, and embraced a national identity.

Catherine Allgor
A Perfect Union:
Dolly Madison
and the Creation of the American Nation

I have discovered I am the “First Lady” of my family to set routines, rituals and traditions that create a family identity. I don’t mean the traditions related to holidays (which seem to be initiated more by marketers than mothers). I mean those regular actions we do together in the course of ordinary family life that make us unique and bind us together.

What are your family rituals, routines or traditions? How important are they in creating your family circle?

Normally, I post polls on Fridays, but this “poll” topic is more conducive to comments, so please leave a comment below with your answers to these questions.

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