Years ago, I started something special in my house. What seemed so simple to me at the time, has become an annual tradition in my house that makes an appearance on the Eve of each of my babies’ birthdays. While they sleep, turning one year older, my husband and I blow up balloons and sneak them onto the floor of their bedroom. We wanted the first thing they lay eyes on when they wake to be excitement.

Growing up, I remember silly little traditions that I knew I could count on with my mom. We moved around a lot, but no matter where we were, she made it special. From the goofy song she made up to celebrate Fridays to the Guns N’ Roses song she coined as “ours,” to the homemade Christmas tree skirt that made an appearance each and every year.

The great thing about traditions are that no matter what’s going on in life, the ups the downs, the beautiful and the messy. Sometimes, traditions are one of the few things we can count on, and look forward to with a smile. The best part is that traditions don’t have to be fancy. They don’t have to be expensive. But there is always thoughtfulness behind them.

It’s true that sometimes the simplest acts of kindness, mean the absolute most to people. The way my sons’ light up on the morning of their birthday is simply priceless. It’s cheap fun. It takes less than 5 minutes to prepare, and even though it is completely expected and not at all a surprise, they wake up THRILLED at the sight of them.

My heart swells at the thought of that memories out living me long after I’m gone. Something that my boys will remember with a smile each year on their birthday, long after the tradition fades in my home. Maybe they’ll continue it with their own kids, in their own home, maybe not, but the pure joy on their faces is what makes traditions so special.

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