Families all over the world have different traditions related to their culture, holidays, and how they live their lives. Today, I want to tell you about a family tradition we started for the Fourth of July when my sons were very young, and we have continued it into their teenage years.
In 1996, a movie premiered the week before Independence Day that my husband and I decided to go and see with some friends. I was pregnant with our first son at the time. Of course, since it was June, and we were living in South Carolina, it was quite hot. We had a great time at the movie, which, ironically, was entitled Independence Day. It was everything we liked in a movie. Action, adventure, aliens invading the planet, heroes emerging, that kind of thing. This movie, and movies like it, were movies we had enjoyed seeing while dating, and the tradition had continued. I think my husband was thankful that romantic movies were not my thing.
A few years later when my older son was a preschooler and my younger son was a toddler, we were looking for something to do in the cool of the house one July 4th. My husband pulled out our Independence Day DVD and said, “Why don’t we watch this?” I agreed, and we all sat down together. The boys were fascinated by the ships and the aliens, especially the air battle where Captain Hiller, Will Smith’s character, makes the alien’s ship crash in the desert. They also laughed at a lot of the funny lines in the movie. It was just a nice afternoon where we enjoyed being with each other.
That started the tradition. The boys grew into their elementary years, and we pulled out the DVD every July. We all began to be able to quote lines from the movie before the characters would even say them. And then the boys grew into their teen years, and they would be the ones to remind us to take out the movie. It had come to mean as much to them as it meant to us, and whatever else we would be doing on that day, we would still remember to take time to watch the movie.
Family traditions are special–on holidays and just in general. I’m glad that when my older son graduates from high school this year, he will have fond memories of growing up and having our own family traditions.