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Entries in events (1)


What Are Your Family Events?

Parties drain me.   This is an attribute of being an introvert, while extroverts get energized at parties.  The exception is a family event….where laughs abound and fond memories are formed.

It doesn’t even need to be my own family event!  Years ago we were moving at Christmas time.  All our possessions were packed including holiday decorations.  A kind family invited us over to their house to share Christmas dessert.

We were warmly welcomed by this family.  The event was a typical family holiday event.  Great food and lots of it, the children playing with their toys, the slightly inebriated uncle, and in their case the grandparent sadly fading with Alzheimer’s.  While it wasn’t “our” family, we enjoyed the food, the story telling and jokes (especially when the jokes were “interpreted” by some of the guests.)  We left with the warmth of a family event.

Aunt Vanessa and DJ cracking upAnother family has their Greek Easter traditions.  Friends and family are invited to this event, where delicious foods are shared (both traditional Greek foods like spanakopita (Greek spinach pie) and lamb, as well as some of the guests’ family favorites like upside down Dutch apple pie.) 

At this year’s event, four generations of family were in attendance.  Everyone from a two year old “ball of energy” to the 90 something year old great grandmother (conserving energy) attended with big smiles and looking forward to an enjoyable day.  Aunts, Uncles, cousins….all attend.

As with many family holiday events, the appetizer “grazing” is a meal in itself!  This is followed by a plate filling feast of food.  Then, this family plays a game called, “Egg Fight.”

After dinner, everyone heads outside as this game can make a bit of a mess.  The game is played with hard boiled eggs. Two people tap their eggs - if an egg cracks that egg is “out,” and the non-cracked egg moves on. This goes on until the winner is declared.

This game wasn’t one shared in my Midwest Irish family.  Everyone plays (the Matriarch of the family won this year), and how predictably some folks become faux competitive.  Given the event uses decorated eggs reaching their shelf life (about a week in a fridge) it is also uses the brightly decorated eggs without resorting to a Forrest Gump list of recipes (you can eat it plain, deviled, as a salad, on a salad, etc.)

All ages participate…there is nobody self-selecting to stay inside.  Smiles proliferate.  Strategies abound (how to hold the egg, how hard to tap, what the optimal temperature is (some, believing colder is better, insulate the egg with paper), etc.  It’s all good fun.

The keys are a common game everyone plays, and nobody taking it too seriously.  Here is a reasonably inexpensive holiday game.  Gifts are eschewed.

Posting a picture of this event on my Facebook page, a friend Holly shares this is something her family also does, and it has a name, “kipping.”  She believes it originated in Germany.  Whatever it is called, it is a fun family event.  Perhaps one even my Midwestern ancestors would enjoy!

What games/traditions does your family bring forward each year?  What traditions would you gladly pass on, and what ones would you like to add to your event planning?