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Shaping Our Lens: Traditions

How often has each of us seen something happen while with another person and much to our disappointment we each come away from the event with a different recollection? The cumulative effect of our life experiences creates in each of us a lens through which we observe what goes on around us. This lens focuses our attention on particular aspects of what we see. 

Family Life Today

The practice of shared Family Traditions, as an integral part of Family life today, will ensure the preservation and progress of our American Culture.  The American Family is the building block of our Nation because it is where we nurture the individuals who must act within our society.  It is here that through love, support, tolerance and caring; we nurture family members to first be good human beings and then to look beyond themselves to be good citizens. 

Marriage and Weddings 

Marriage is a social institution that defines the relationship between a man and a woman. It defines in legal terms the obligations of spouses to each other and to their children. This forms the basis for also defining the rights of the children born into the family created by the marriage relationship. 

Anniversaries 

The marriage relationship must be treasured above all else as the basis for creating the environment and conditions necessary to the achievement of "Family" on a permanent basis. Wedding Anniversaries are engulfed in Custom and Tradition. 

The Family Meal 

Although modern life seems to have overtaken The Family Meal in many areas, there are still many American Families that practice the Custom of either the Daily (evening) Family Meal or a Sunday Family Meal. Often, the Sunday Family Meal is a time for gathering children and grandchildren.

The Window Candle 

The Tradition of placing a Candle in the Window goes back to the Colonial times in the United States and back much further in time for other cultures.  It is a Tradition practiced throughout the year. It symbolizes the warmth and security of the Family hearth and signals loyalty to Family members who are not present in the home. At Christmas Time it follows the tradition of The Colonial Williamsburg Christmas.

Children 

Although children may turn from their families during adolescence, most return as adults with the principles and values they learned from their family experience. Failure to take the time to develop our sons and daughters will at some point become a lifetime regret. We have one chance to be with them while they are in the formative stages. Many families adopt individuals as sons, daughters, aunts, uncles etc. One of the most satisfying contributions we make in life is the investment of our personal time and caring in those we love. 

The American Dream: Freedom 

Our American History contains the lessons that form the basis for our Family Values. At the center of American Family Life  today is the assumption that we are all first free to do what we want! Our Flag and The American Eagle are the symbols of this Freedom culture of ours and are therefore frequently associated with our display of Pride in America during our celebrations and sporting events. Displaying these two National Symbols are just two examples of American Family Traditions. 

History 

If we as citizens of our great Nation do not know and remember the lessons of our American History, we will surely loose this great Nation of ours. Beginning with the American Revolution, all of the hard work and sacrifice it has taken for our forefathers and ancestors to establish and keep our country will be required to keep it into the future. 

War Casualties 

Many men and women have died defending this nation on the field of battle or "on duty" under the colors of our Flag. We have listed below casualties of war through the years to illustrate the significance of the sacrifice of many for our country. These statistics are humbling in the face of the significance of their sacrifice. 

Our Flag 

The Flag of The United States of America will stand only as long as all of us want it to stand. It is the symbol of this great Nation of ours built from the hard work and sacrifice of those who have gone before us. The strength of our Nation is the sum total of that hard work and sacrifice, and the strength, cunning and prowess of those who our forefathers, sons and daughters have fought and defeated in battle to defend it.

Old Glory 

This tribute to The Flag of The United States makes a wonderful reading for patriotic ceremonies. It sums up in one short poem the sacrifice of all who have gone before us to ensure the security of this great Nation. When read as part of a Ceremony, play Lee Greenwood's "Proud to be an American" as background music. You will truly touch your audience.

The Declaration of Independence 

What a bold move on the part of our Founding Fathers. To feel strong and confident enough to break away from the English and risk death and destruction was nothing short of extraordinary. They were driven to declare themselves free from "The British Crown" by their passion for Freedom and the attainment of an Ideal; a place on earth were people could be free and equal. 

The Constitution 

The United States Constitution is the framework for our government. It lays out the principles of our democracy placing everyone including our rulers under the law. Most recently, U. S. citizens were directly exposed to the importance of our Constitution in defining "The Rule of Law" during The 2000 Presidential Election.

The Bill of Rights 

The Constitution was ratified by all States in June 1788. During the discussions leading to the ratification there were many heated debates about individual rights. Many felt the Constitution lacked protection for the rights of the Citizens.

The American Eagle 

The eagle represents Freedom. The bald eagle was chosen June 20, 1782 as the emblem of the United States of America, because of its long life, great strength and majestic looks, and also because it was then believed to exist only on this continent.

Ceremonies

Patriotic Ceremonies are a part of many Public Programs sponsored by Schools, Churches, Clubs, Associations, Sports Clubs, Professional Meetings etc. Good Citizens give their personal time to good causes. Being in a Leadership position in an organization requires Citizens to be aware of patriotic Rituals associated with public ceremonies. 

American Culture 

Beyond the walls of our home lies a great Nation with a culture of its own. The structure of our Government, our laws and the way people relate to each other have great influence on our actions and attitudes.

Holidays and Holydays 

Americans find many reasons to celebrate. On a National scale there are 10 Federal Holidays. Not all States recognize the same Holidays as the Federal Government. Holidays may have a religious or non-religious origin. One thing Holidays do have in common: most companies give us a paid day off to celebrate! There are many other Days with attached significance that provide us the opportunity to enrich our lives. In any case, Americans love any excuse to celebrate!

American Craftsmanship 

At the most basic level, Craftsmanship is the demonstrated skill or dexterity resulting from years of practical experience. The United States of America has been known throughout history for the performance of its Craftsmen. The Industrial Revolution in many ways robbed our workforce of many of the values held true by our Craftsmen of old.

American Entrepreneurial Spirit 

At the most basic level, Entrepreneurship is the demonstrated ability to organize, manage, and assume the risks of a business or enterprise. The United States is a Free Society that fosters Free Enterprise. Nowhere in the world is there so much entrepreneurship as there is in the United States. On average 3,171 businesses are established each business day! 

 

This Web Site is a work in progress. It has 3 pages serving as a focal point to share American Family Traditions with you. They are the Freedom, Family,  and American Culture pages. The Traditions page serves as a location where you can share your Family Traditions with us so that we can post selected ones for visitors to this Web Site to view. Our Links page serves as a focal point with other Web Sites. Visit our About Us page to learn about The American Family Traditions Company. Our Site Index will aid you in navigating this Web Site. Visit our Shopping Mall to buy related products!

 

Evening Glow - Christmas Cottage X from Thomas Kinkade
Pierside Gallery
Thomas Kinkade

Traditions:

Freedom 
1.History

2.Flag
3.Think
4.Declaration
5.Constitution
6.Bill of Rights
7.American Eagle

7.Ceremonies


Family
1.Weddings
2.Anniversaries
3.Family Ritual
4.Candle In The
Window

5.Children

American Culture
1.Holidays
2.Craftsmanship
3.Entrepreneurship
4.Leadership
5.Know-How
6.Competition

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This Web Site is the intellectual property of American Family Traditions. Some of the information provided is general knowledge and some is the original work of American Family Traditions. Permission must be requested to use or reproduce any of its contents to ensure fairness. Footnotes have been provided where appropriate to give credit to the work of others and to ensure you get permission from those sources.
Copyright ?  2000-2001 American Family Traditions. All Rights Reserved.
Last updated March 29, 2001
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