Saturday, October 4, 2008

It's a family tradition!

Just last night I was thinking about traditions, though not exactly in the, well, traditional sense. I was joking with a neighbor who was vacationing in North Carolina's Outer Banks. She'd called from the parking lot at Wal-Mart, where her husband was he does every single Friday evening on his way home from work. I told her to tell him I was glad he was sticking with tradition, even far from home.

Perhaps his tradition is really little more than habit, but it is a reminder that we are rapidly approaching a season in which family traditions are a big deal. From Halloween through the New Year, I suspect all of us do things we started in childhood and have continued with our own families.

In my neighborhood here, for instance, the Halloween decorations are already up. Yards are filled with pumpkins -- real and plastic. Bats hang from trees. Giant spiders spin huge webs. For someone whose family never went overboard for this particular holiday, it's rather amazing to see half the town transformed into some sort of haunted community. And it's all a bit like the town of Serenity in my Sweet Magnolias series.

Serenity is a town which loves its holidays, which makes the Christmas festivities the perfect theme for WELCOME TO SERENITY, which hits stores around Thanksgiving.

Because of that I'm launching a new website just for the holidays. You'll be able to link to it from my website,, and there will be more information on this site as well as soon as it goes online at the beginning of November. The focus will be on finding serenity during the holidays. It will be filled with easy and inexpensive decorating tips, gift ideas and websites, and tons of recipes. There's even a list of ideas for chasing away the holiday blues.

I'm also hoping all of you will share your favorite holiday traditions and recipes with us, as well. Since it won't kick off until around November 1, you can get started now by sharing your Halloween traditions right here. Do you gather all the neighborhood kids and bob for apples? Is there a neighborhood costume party? Are there traditions that you no longer do because of safety concerns...popcorn balls or candy apples for trick or treat, for instance? Click on comments below and share your favorite ideas that put you into the Halloween spirit.

And start thinking about those favorite things that make all of the upcoming holidays special for your family. I want to hear about the decoration you made for your mom when you were in kindergarten, the one that always hangs front and center on the tree. I want to hear about caroling excursions or Aunt Jane's fruit cake. Tell us about the first turkey you roasted or the rolls that somehow never make it into the oven on Thanksgiving. Sharing your favorite memories may spark traditions for the rest of us...or make us chuckle...or shed a tear.

There's a reason we cling to traditions. And now there's a place to share them. I really hope to hear from you.

Sherryl Woods

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Blogger MargaretD said...

My son's are 15 and 11 yrs old. They along with their buddies love to trick or treat. My rule is they need to dress up, and they do. Everything revolves around Star Wars with boys!

Its not a tradition, but since I have been involved with PTO, Scouts, etc. most kids that come to the door know who I, no treats if they don't give a "hearty" Trick or Treat....One of our neighbors has the reputation of handing out hot toddies to the adults! Remy Brandy is just the right thing when its 40 degress out!

We always have trick or treating in the evening, which adds to the fun. Unfortunate tho' that the people from the city come into our neighborhood to partake.

October 16, 2008 7:17 PM  
Blogger Sherryl said...

Sherryl703I'm so glad to hear that trick or treating is alive and well where you are. I miss seeing all the little kids dressed up and even the good-natured teens with a sweet tooth. Seems in Virginia, fewer and fewer kids are going door to door and in Florida, they don't visit the condo where I live.

October 20, 2008 5:55 AM  
Blogger Pat said...

I live in a small town (pop. 118) and we don't have many children in our town. This year we had a community weiner roast for the families. We built a fire in a cattle water tank (for safety). The hot dogs and toasted marshmellows tasted so good. Of course we had a variety of cookies and popcorn made the old fashion way. It was a calm, clear night and the hot apple cider warmed our bones after the sunset. Everyone enjoyed sitting around the fire visiting. Hope we do it next year.

November 2, 2008 6:25 PM  

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