New Black Friday Family Traditions

New Black Friday Family Traditions

As this post debuts on this blog, it is Black Friday. The day that has become–in the U.S.A.–a traditional major shopping day. A day to get deeper in debt. A day to fight crowds and long lines. A day to be inundated by all the chemical smells of new plastics and synthetic fabrics in the stores so that you go home with a headache.

A day to get sucked in by materialism and buy a bunch of stuff neither you nor your loved ones truly want or need. (But it’s on sale, so you can’t resist.)

You may argue that going shopping the day after Thanksgiving helps you burn some of the excess calories you consumed the day before. But if your kids attend school, they have the day off, and one or both parents may have the day off as well. Why not start some new Black Friday Family Traditions that will bring your family closer together while helping to keep you in the simple living and eco-friendly vein?

Here are some ideas:

1. Spend the morning baking Christmas cookies together.

Give each family member a specific job. Even toddlers can participate by dumping pre-measured ingredients into a bowl and helping to mix. Of course, you will use (or modify) one of the recipes in Nourishing Traditions, which use pre-soaked flour and natural sweeteners…won’t you?

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2. Begin decorating the house for Christmas.

New Black Friday Family Traditions

If you celebrate Christmas but don’t normally put up your Christmas tree until December, pull the family together and get up the smaller decorations, such as garland on the stair rail or bowls of ornaments. If you have crafty little mice in the house, put together a simple Christmas project they can make that will subsequently hang from a doorknob, ceiling, refrigerator, etc.

3. Browse a bookstore.

If you need to get out of the house, bookstores will probably be more crowded than usual but not as frenzied as department stores. Give everyone an allowance, and take the time to help younger children to decide what book they would most enjoy over and over again.

4. Spend part of the afternoon outdoors, playing together.

Unless there’s a blizzard, ice storm, or non-stop thunderstorm, bundle everyone up as necessary and play ball in the back yard (snowball fights if you had a white Thanksgiving). Or go to a park and play some kind of tag or relay races. If you can get your neighbors to go with you, so much the better.

5. Throw a game party.

Call your kids’ friends’ parents and invite the entire families over for a game party. Knock on neighbors’ doors. Have each household bring their favorite board game, then spend two or three hours rotating between games. Have some Larabars, fruit, or healthy cookies from the morning on hand as munchies.

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Use these ideas as a springboard, and create your own Black Friday Family Traditions. At the end of the day, you will be more bonded, more refreshed, and healthier–both mentally and physically–than you would by spending the day in shopping malls.