Today’s blog post is from Megan, a mama of two. She’s sharing her favorite family traditions she and her husband have created for their family. You can find Megan on her Instagram and blog. Don’t forget that Stitches by Natalie can create stuffed animals out of your favorite tourist t-shirts, blankets you buy on family vacations, or special family memories.
Making Memories with Your Kids
When I think about making memories with my family as a kid I always go back to family traditions. My husband and I have worked in some form of the restaurant business for most of our adult lives. So not surprising most of the memories we’re making with our kids are made in the kitchen or around food inside or outside of our home. So here are some of my favorite Family Traditions we’ve made for our little troop.
1. Lamb on Easter Dinner and the Kids Help
Mint Jelly and Lamb is our families Easter tradition. Our kids love to cook, and I know when they look back and think about making memories in our house our kitchen will be a place they will think fondly of. Lamb and Mint Jelly was a family tradition of my husband’s family and I’m happy to carry it on with my kiddos. With both of their grandparents on my husband’s side being gone it’s nice to also teach them about their Dad’s family traditions.
2. TugBoat Race
Tug Boat Race happens every Labor Day Weekend on the Hudson River. Our “anything with an engine” loving son is obsessed with boats but drew a liking to specifically Tug Boats. So when he was barely the age of one we discovered the Tug Boat Race. While we normally ride the Circle Line tourist boat to go out and watch the race, last year as we arrived right as the boat was pulling out of the dock. It was raining my three-year-old was devasted and crying. He wasn’t going to get to ride the Circle Line to watch the race. Then suddenly, the captain of the Patricia tug boat with two boys around my kids age saw what had happened. They happily scooped up our family and we got to ride the tug boat in the race. Best part is we WON. Afterwards my husband even took home 1st place in the spinach eating contest.
3. Katz on Thanksgiving
Now that have kids we do make a turkey but that doesn’t stop us from having pastrami sandwiches at Katz Deli every year for lunch. A family tradition once started over a decade ago when the power went out on our block for Thanksgiving. We ended up at the one place open for Thanksgiving lunch with the best Pastrami Sandwiches one has ever had. We normally skip the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade and opt into a less crowded tradition the night before with the blowing up the Macy’s balloons so we have plenty of time to cook on Thanksgiving while still fitting in a nontraditional lunch. My kids love going to this place. The sawdust, the smell of fresh
sliced pastrami I hope someday my kids can take their children here and show them how to properly eat a pastrami on rye
4. Macy’s Santa and Korean BBQ in Korean Town
We’re lucky (crazy) enough to be raising our kids in NYC which means we get some good-looking Santa’s at Macys. After seeing the big guy himself we always head two blocks over to Korean Town to hit up our favorite Korean BBQ in NYC, Miss Korea. My now four-year-old says this is the best day of the year. It combines his two favorite things; Santa and Meat.
5. Cutting Down a Christmas Tree and saving a Pine Cone
My husband is notorious in our neighborhood for having the biggest tree you can possibly fit into a NYC apartment. Once he had to cut the entire back of the tree out to get it in the door. The bigger the tree the better for Santa to spot us he jokes. We always drive outside of the city and to a Christmas tree farm where we let our kids pick out (as long as it’s gigantic) our tree for that year’s Christmas. The kids love cutting it down and picking out a pinecone from it. Which we save and keep every year, so we always have a memory of our tree.
This is just a glimpse into our family’s traditions and how we make memories with our kids. It’s always a helpful reminder to myself that my kid is just as happy doing paint projects on a rainy day as they are out exploring the city. All that matters to them is that we’re all together.