This week’s tip is to start a new food and/or drink tradition. Most of us have a family holiday stand-by – whether it’s chile on Christmas Eve or corned beef and cabbage for St. Patrick’s Day – you get the point.
My suggestion is to establish a non-holiday tradition that you and your family can enjoy for years to come. One of my favorites is our weekly family night, where the person whose turn it is not only gets to pick out the activity, but also selects the menu, including dessert. I hope Gabe and Lexi will continue this tradition when they have kids of their own. I must admit, however, that my most favorite tradition was inspired by my late and great stepfather, Gerry, and our mutual love for the Washington Redskins.
I miss Papa Gerry so much – he was one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. We started getting each other Redskins memorabilia for Christmas presents and as the years went by, we started trying to up each other.
I got him a fun engraved beer stein (which he drank from each game) and a very cool Redskins watch that he wore every time I saw him during the regular season.
However, Gerry won the gift battle when he gave me an awesome Redskins crystal decanter and glass set. Oh my! It brought me to tears. Actually, in retrospect, it wasn’t that much of a battle between the two of us, but really more who could bring the biggest smile to each other’s face. And it was win-win for both of us.
O.K., I have to admit I was afraid to use the decanter for a few years because it was so cool and I didn’t want anything to happen to it. But after Gerry died, I decided I needed to honor him by using it, just like he used the stein I gave him.
So I brought in the single malt scotch. I’m not a big scotch drinker, but when I do imbibe I prefer single malts at least 12 years old or more. A fifth usually lasts me at least a year, so I don’t mind splurging a tad.
So here’s my “new” tradition: If the Redskins win, I get to have a celebratory drink out of the decanter and one of the glasses. Woooo-hooo! Since the Redskins have had such crappy win-loss records the past several years, my brother suggested I should drink when the Skins lose instead – maybe he has a point.
And, luckily, the 2011 NFL season has started surprisingly well! We beat the Giants in the home opener at their house – who would have thought! It will be interesting to see what the rest of the season brings. At any rate, I think Gerry is shining down on me and our decanter and likes this tradition. Go Skins!
Before ending I have to mention another tradition in our house, again around toasting to a winning team, this time the Wolfpack (sigh). At least we have the football AND basketball season to do so. It’s red and white forever. And burgundy and gold.
Eat, drink and be merry!