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Portable Traditions

Along with having a fantastic time at the Greystone Estate, we did learn several things at the marriage retreat that I believe will continue to improve our marriage.

One of these things was the importance of portable traditions. Whether intentionally or unintentionally most people build traditions around particular times of year or celebrations – Christmas, Easter, birthdays, anniversaries of various sorts, etc. Sometimes these traditions are tied to a particular place or location. As a United Methodist clergy person, who will travel from place to place in ministry, it will be important to have traditions that are portable will allow for the continuity of traditions and also assist in making each new place seem like home. This is certainly not limited to clergy, as there are many careers which require moving from place to place.

Growing as a preacher’s kid (PK) in the United Methodist Church, I did not realize that this is what happened – but it was. As a family our traditions were portable – Sunday afternoon naps on Mom and Dad’s bed, taking time at holidays to give everyone time to respond to a particular question, Christmas stockings in the family room whether or not there was a fireplace. (Thanks Mom and Dad!)

Nicole and I have one tradition that did not start intentionally, but it has become intentional. Whenever we arrive to a new place or return from traveling, we like to take time that first night to watch a movie together – often accompanied by pizza eaten out of the box in front of the television.

I would love to hear your thoughts on this topic.

  1. What traditions did you have growing up?
  2. What traditions do you currently practice or would like to practice?
  3. Are these traditions portable?

By Andrew Conard

Christian, husband, son, brother, homeowner

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