Friday, November 28, 2014

Simple Traditions...

Do you have a family holiday tradition that is your favorite?

I have several but one of the best at Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and the 4th of July is that after dinner was over the guys put on their aprons and did the dishes and all the clean up.  
Memory doesn't tell me when we started this. I do know that it was one Thanksgiving when we were all gathered at my mother and father in laws Song of the River house. It may have started with the losing of a poker bet to the Cowman's card shark grandmother... 
There were a lot of us, as the Cowman was one of seven children. At the time we were all married and had small children. Those of us who married into the clan, brought our mothers, fathers, siblings, and any friends that didn't have a place to go. It was a darn good thing that they had a big open rambling house. 
Over time it became tradition for the guys to do clean up, and let the women folk rest after days of cooking.  So as we retreated to the living room with classes of wine, and savored the moment, the guys could be heard over in the large open kitchen.  We would occasionally be consulted on how to handle china, stemware, or where a pan went.  They were actually very good at it and funny with it.  There were so many of them that it all was done in no time with much teasing banter and laughter. When they had finished, they would join us and the banter and laughter carried on...
Now we are scattered far and wide, and seldom get the chance to all be together. Some of us still carry on the tradition, but it's not the same...    


  1. That pretty much sounds like this place the last several years. My son and I get up and go until it's done. I think it's only fair.

  2. Independence Day - BBQ and Fireworks. Simple fun.

    I took the kids to Hawaii one year for Independence Day and we did fireworks at Schofield Barracks (Oahu), and ate chow there on base, but it's really not the same. We also took the lake boat to Lake Mead one year, really not the same. We took the Ocean boat and did a BBQ next to the Queen Mary in Long Beach Harbor and fireworks there and it was fun.

    But not as fun as being home, kids play in the pool, dad BBQ's whatever and then we walk to the regional park (short walk) for a concert and fireworks.

  3. Nothing a good as a house full of laughter.

  4. Lovely to imagine!!
    Nothing makes me happier than lots of family in a house. The banter and laughter is beautiful!

  5. The only male in my kitchen this year was grandson Ryan, the chef. And boy were we glad he was there. He came a week early and spent time using dishes and utensils I didn't even know I had. Even with all his training and skills he still was not a dishwasher. Too many male chauvinist pigs in the place.

  6. I think that tradition should become National. What a great idea. My Dad always did the cooking so anyone who had teen in their age did the clean up. I like your way better.

  7. I like the bit about "glasses of wine".

  8. Those are the traditions that NEED to be passed on...

  9. ODIE: I'm sure your wife is thankful that you do this for her.

    LL: Being together at home is the best!

    CELIA: Tis true.

    JENNY: It was always a delicious mad house of all ages, and full of love & laughter.

    GRANNY ANNIE: If I had a chef or guy doing all the cooking, I would gladly do cleanup.

    ARKANSAS PATTI: Most of us still do it, and now I have grandkids that participate.

    LSP: Come and give the blessing Padre and you will have all the blessed wine you can handle...

    OLD NFO: Trying...

  10. Since all the kids are gone, my wife and I have started grilling steak for Thanksgiving. It's a tradition I'm willing to live with.

  11. EURIPIDES: You can't go wrong with a good steak...

  12. With a large family spreading far and wide is inevitable, but consider it as seeding the same kind of tradition in new places. It's up to us to gather who we can and organize our own holiday, with whoever is still in the area. Small or big, it's the attitude that makes the party.

  13. C W SWANSON: I agree wholeheartedly. My kids and I have continued it and some of the other family members.