Last Updated on December 7, 2016

When our kids were young we had an old pickup truck. This silly truck had a love for ice cream which seemed to hit at the oddest times. Most often it happened when my husband, John, was driving the kids some place. All of a sudden he would pretend to jerk the steering wheel as if the truck was taking control.

“Yikes, it’s happening! My truck is out of control. It needs ice cream.” And rapidly he’d make a detour to the nearest ice cream shop.

Sometimes we’d be having an ordinary night at home. All of a sudden we’d hear John exclaim in a very loud voice, “Do you hear it? I hear it! It’s getting louder. Hurry, climb in the truck. It’s having an attack!” Of course the only way to calm down the truck was for everyone to go get ice cream.

My husband also had a pet rubber alligator. He named him Alfonzo. Alfonzo lived in John’s dresser drawer but occasionally he would escape and hide in some outrageous place–the freezer, a book shelf, under a pillow on the couch, inside a kitchen cupboard, or the dog food container. Alfonzo’s wanderings were never announced and often he wasn’t discovered until he had been missing for days. But when he was found a great shout of joy rang out! Whoever discovered Alfonzo was allowed to ask Dad to do anything for him or her (within reason). Often the request was a special outing. But it was always simply for pure fun.

Simple fun. It’s so easy in today’s over-scheduled society to lose sight of “simply silly things.”  Things that don’t have to be put on the calendar or arranged, rather things that can be somewhat spontaneous! A silly thing brings laughter into a family whose members often take themselves too seriously. It restores perspective and adds a layer of fun to family life.

Perhaps as the days turn cold and skies become grey we need to lighten up. Create one or two “simply silly” traditions for your family. You can bet these silly things will be what your kids will remember when they are all grown up.

Does your family have a fun and silly family tradition?

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  1. Thanks, Susan. It’s interesting how laughter and the little things bond families together. 🙂

    1. Thanks Jennifer! You are so right, we think it’s the big things when often it’s the little ones they most remember.
      Love, Susan

  2. I’m glad that my wife forwarded a link to this article to me. John’s antics sound like the kind of thing we’ll enjoy as our baby gets older.

    1. Alfredo,
      It’s great to hear from a man! Thanks so much for responding!

  3. Cheri lueck says:

    Thanks for this fun reminder. Our boys have stuffed animals that they sleep with, but are not too attached to. Sometimes I give them, a stuffed monkey, and a stuffed moose, a voice and personality, pretend that they are so excited to sleep with my sons etc. My oldest who is five, when he is having a hard time going to bed will ask me to talk for Moose. He still eats it up and feels cozier with his stuffed moose because of our silly interaction. I thought simply going for ice cream was fun enough, but I love that the truck got involved!!! Might have to try it! Our boys love the trucks!!! (would have to switch the carseats to the truck though, hahaha). Will be worth the fun memory!

    1. Thanks Cheri! Yes it’s harder now with carseats! I love your animal ideas. Very clever!
      Blessings, Susan

  4. Angela De Jager says:

    My kids love Torture Day! It started years ago, when I realized our Thanksgiving feast wasn’t special because our normal table was always so blessedly full. I determined to prepare my family the day before Thanksgiving by doing without. I wanted us hungry. We fashioned the day to reflect on what the Pilgrims went through so researched their crossing fare and early foods. Over the years it has settled to dried cheese, hard tack, jerked beef and water. We experimented with “ale”(yuck), oysters(ok) and added dry popcorn. Its a day without electricity or heat or entertainment of any kind except read alouds and stories and “i spy” games. We do start a fire when it gets dark cuz the Pilgrims have now “landed”. Ultimately, its about family down-time and together time and yes, we do get really hungry. My college kids will beg off classes to join us, my adult children will ask for “family day” off work to join us, my nieces and neighbor kids love to join us too. Its hard for me because the livingroom gets trashed and the next day I usually have to host Thanksgiving dinner for 17+ people. But the kids won’t let me stop. They intend to do it in their families too. Torture Day. I intended it for a discipline. God turned it into joy.

    1. Angela,
      This is positively a fabulous idea!! Discipline to joy! A great tradition with meaning!
      Thanks for sharing this!

  5. I LOVE this post! Having these fun and silly traditions is what helps to bind your hearts together! Our kids are getting older, but they still live for the silly stuff! I can’t wait to see what they do with their own kids! 🙂

    1. Thanks so much for responding Kelli. Yes, you’ll laugh when you see your kids do things like this with your grandkids!
      Blessings, Susan

  6. When ours were little we used to go for Jammie Rides. After dinner, we’d do our normal bedtime routine, jammies, story, etc. but instead of tucking them in bed, Daddy would call for a Jammie Ride. We’d pile in the van and just go for a drive…usually through Dunkin’ Donuts for munchkins for the kids and coffee for Mom & Dad. The kids loved the novelty of being out in their jammies after dark and would usually fall asleep before we got home. We especially loved doing this around Christmas time to look at lights…hmmmm might be time for another Jammie Ride soon!

    1. Love the Jammie rides Lois! What a great idea. Ya’ll look out for Moms on the roads with their kids in pj’s over the next few weeks and credit Lois!
      Have fun!