Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tradition Thursday - July Traditions

For those of you still checking in, just a reminder that I'm now posting to the new blog Lily&Thistle.  I am, however, still posting monthly traditions throughout this year here.  So here is what I have to share for July:

Independence Day Parade: Decorate kids’ bikes and wagons in red, white, and blue crepe paper and invite neighbors to do the same.  Have all of the kids invite their families to stand outside and watch the parade.

Stars of Appreciation BBQ: As a family make stars in red, white and blue.  When guests come for the BBQ, as a group, each person takes a star and writes what being an American means to them.  After everyone is done, each person reads what they wrote and is given a piece of tape to hang their star as a decoration.  After the BBQ is over, bring out a big birthday cake with sparklers celebrating our nation’s birthday.  Instead of singing “Happy Birthday”, sing a favorite song about America.  Take a picture each year and make a collage of the stars with each year’s picture.

Fourth of July Mural: Invite neighbor children over to create a Fourth of July sidewalk mural.  On the day of the event supply every artist with colored chalk and set them loose on the driveway or sidewalk in front of your house.  Have them work as a team to create a giant flag or colorful fireworks.  The older kids can sketch the outlines, while the younger ones fill in with color.  Take pictures of each artist by his/her work of art.

Courage:  Because this is the month we celebrate those who have gone on before us in Courage to make our Nation great, it is the perfect time to overcome some of our own fears.  Near the beginning of the month, have each family member write down anything they are afraid of or would like to do if they weren’t afraid.  Older family members can help younger ones.  Everyone picks out one fear to try to conquer for the month and shares it with the rest of the family.  Be careful not to laugh at or criticize each other’s fears.  Listen, validate and be supportive.  Help each family member think of ways they can overcome their fear, instead of suggesting your own, and simply ask how you can help.  At the end of the month, talk about what each member has done and ceremoniously dispose of the slips of paper the fear was written on. 

National Ice Cream Day: July 15th is National Ice Cream Day.  Celebrate by either making homemade ice cream or buy enough ice cream to make a HUGE family sized sundae and share it!

Pioneer Day: July 24th is Pioneer Day.  Have a bread and milk supper with fruit, cheese, and onions (old pioneer favorites).  Tell pioneer stories and share excerpts from journals.  Sing pioneer songs and maybe even have an old fashioned square dance with family and friends.