‘Sunday Thoughts’ ~ “Traditions”

” Tradition is not the worship of ashes, but the preservation of fire.” ~ Gustav Mahler 


Dear Friends: My New Year message to you and your families…Sandra’s last New Year post. I hope you enjoy her mnessage and pass it to the ones you love.

And now…her own words and her own beautiful style…


Good Sunday morning, dear friends.  Happy New Year!  I hope you and your family had a beautiful Christmas and this new year is off to a good beginning.  

As we begin to close Christmas (oh, how I drag my feet) and welcome our new year, today finds me thinking of traditions and special memories.  I do believe they are strongly tied together with the ribbons of our hearts.  We all have traditions we enjoy and loved ones who are associated with them.   Such as the photo above of the teacups.  I can never look at a teacup without thinking of mom.  She loved pretty teacups. And she said, “A pretty teacup makes even bad tea lovely.”  She had something there, it does help.  I collect teacups and saucers ~ but only the pretty ones (just for mom).  

“We are missing an enormous opportunity if we deny ourselves a wholesome, mature reliance on those who have evolved to what we aspire to become. As Sir Isaac Newton urged, we can evolve best by standing on the shoulders of giants, getting closer to truth by building on the discoveries of those luminaries who came before us.” ~ Miles Neale

Exquisite handwork is something I adore, even if it is not made by someone dear to me.  I feel as though I am the caretaker of someone’s lovely work.  Their skills and their creative spirit are qualities to be treasured and I do.  I have gained a greater appreciation of beauty through my discoveries of such remarkable gems.  And as a member of the senior generation, to me, it is important for the younger folks to understand the work and the time that has gone into creating endeavors of the heart.  Understand, I don’t mean they have to love and collect vintage pieces, but it is important for them to have an appreciation of such.

Appreciation of the hours upon hours of work makes one pause in awe, even for a moment, to simply realize they are looking at something more than words.

The best moments in reading are when you come across something ~ a thought, a feeling, a way of looking at things ~ which you had thought special and particular to you. Now here it is, set down by someone else, a person you have never met, someone even who is long dead. And it is as if a hand has come out and taken yours.” ~ Alan Bennett

Reading is a gift that I give myself as often as possible.  I am from a mother and grandmother who both read everything imaginable.  They were both quite political and read newspapers front to back.   I think this resulted from both of them living through dreadful wars and trying social times. While I think what they enjoyed is important and I have an appreciation for their feelings, I have other reading interests.  As it should be.  I value their love of reading and what they instilled in me but, “I feel as other hands have reached out and taken mine.”

” Food history is as important as a baroque church. Governments should recognize cultural heritage and protect traditional foods. A cheese is as worthy of preserving as a sixteenth-century building.” ~ Carlo Petrini


Recently, I read something about a woman who was pursuing her Ph.D. in Food Studies.  Don’t ask me where I read it or who it was about all I remember is it was quite interesting.  The article spoke to how food correlates with our traditions.   And how important it is to preserve these traditions.  Food definitely evokes special memories.  

The other day, I was chatting with my dear friend, Janet.  Her daughter had asked her about one of her mom’s recipes.  Janet didn’t have the particular recipe, she felt one of her sisters had it.  Anyway, the conversation did lead my friend to ponder a few things.  She told me she was thinking of preparing a little cookbook of her favorite recipes and giving a copy to each of her children.  “Outstanding,” I said.  Too often, treasures are lost, part of our heritage as well as our traditions.  Apple Brandy Canelés - Imbibe Magazine

In the Bordeaux area of France,  around 1985 a group of 88 patissiers came together to protect and write in stone the standard of the recipe for Canelé’s and to make them the property of Bordeaux.  The chefs took an oath to uphold this standard and to always use the secret recipe, which they knew was kept in a vault to pass to future generations.  They felt it was so important to protect and maintain their standards in a world full of food trends, and desperation to create something “new and different,” regardless of integrity or flavor.   I do believe the folks in Bordeaux would certainly agree with the words of Carlo Petrini.


I have had the experience of things slipping away.  When I was growing up a lovely Italian woman lived across the street and she was a marvelous cook.  One of the things she made every summer was stuffed zucchini blossoms.  She would always come to our home with a plate full of these delicacies.  What a treat.  I have several of her recipes but missed this one.  I think of her and her divine creations quite often in the summer.



“Like Christmas trees and Easter egg hunts and the block party on the last day of summer, we do things because traditions feel cozy and safe.” ~ Corey Ann Haydu


Who wouldn’t remember being in the woods with someone who loved you, gathering greens and or a tree?  And using a sled that was most likely your grandparents.  Certainly a tradition worthy of preservation.



Baking treats for neighbors and your local shelter is worthy as well.  Not just at Christmas, but all throughout the year.  Efforts of kindness are always appreciated.


“Things of quality have no fear of time.” ~ unknown

Our old home, built in 1939 has “no fear of time.”  She shelters us and comforts us and we are grateful to take care of her.  And our prayer is to someday place her in worthy hands.

mymodernhouse: “From Home Decor Obsession ”

I can hear the stories ~ can you?


And, these frames are such a work of art.  It would be wonderful to know what they have held throughout the years.  

“The past informs the present.” ~Fennel Hudson



Dear friends, thank you for your visit.  Know I wish you and yours a most beautiful January Sunday.

And as we begin this new year . . .

May we all maintain respect and love for traditions that no longer serve us and “preserve with fire” those that do.

Stay well!


“Every plant, tree, and animal is a blessing and every person has a purpose for living. Courage, curiosity, and generosity produce noble spirits. Enduring life honorably results in wisdom. Knowledge passed down from one generation to the next along with humankind’s tradition of performing charitable and self-sacrificing deeds creates principled legacies for future generations to emulate.” ~ Kilroy J. Oldster 







Images:  Tumblr, M.S. Lambiotte





































20 thoughts on “‘Sunday Thoughts’ ~ “Traditions”

  1. Beautiful post Sandra! I do believe that traditions are very important. Have a lovely day.

  2. Happy New Year, Sandra. This is a beautiful post to begin 2022! I love traditions and so hope to pass them down to my grandchildren. Food is one of my favorite traditions that passed to me from my beloved Mother. Yesterday as we enjoyed our traditional first day of January dinner, I thought of my Mother as I was making cornbread. She never used a recipe, but I watched her so many times that I remember exactly how she did it. Thank you for your lovely sentiments and images. I loved the photo of your home. Enjoy the first week of 2022!

    1. Dear Pam, I know you cherish your memories and traditions and love sending them along to the little ones. They will have such grand memories of you and Butch. Your cornbread story of your mom reminded me of the peanut butter fudge story of mom. A million times I watched her make it and not one time did she ever measure a thing. I have a recipe, thank heavens, but I make certain to be accurate. I wouldn’t attempt it without my recipe. Mom’s fudge was always perfect – she just knew how to do it. Have a great week, my friend.

  3. Wonderfully thoughtful post for the start of a new year! As I sit in my 1938 home that has been updated, I enjoy the conveniences the updates provide, but truly appreciate the preserved parts equally or more. Textiles, garden pass alongs, food recipes…..all are valuable for insights into our history, and so worth keeping! As my sisters and I go antiquing, the joy of history and learning about things from the past create such adventures! Happy new year, Sandra. I hope we all grow in wisdom this year!

    1. Rita, as I look at your lovely home in your last post, there is a home down the street from us that is very similar in design. You will enjoy it so much. Traditions are so very important to us and I hope there will always be love and respect for them.
      Happy new year to you and your family. Stay well!

  4. Absolutely lovely post, Sandra. You touched on a few of my own favourites. Traditions matter – they connect the generations of families. There is something special about having something that a grandmother or great aunty once owned. It brings the past into our present. Children gravitate to traditions – how often have we heard the lament, ‘but we always do it this way’. I believe the child in us needs tradition and rituals to set patterns that give meaning to our lives. Your post reminds us of that.

    Happiest of new years – wishing you and Michael good health for the body and cheer for the soul… kindness and courage too. Warmest heart hugs, Brenda xo

    1. Thank you so much, Brenda. I agree with your every word. The many family things from both of our families speak to that as well as the many things I have found along the way I felt needed a home.
      Wishing you and your family a happy and healthy New Year!

  5. Loving this post, from the photos to the ‘deep’ thoughts. I can’t help hum, “Traditions”, from Fiddler on the Roof. ( I played violin in pit orchestras and concert orchestras) as a teen and college. Yes, traditions are something we need to nurse and care for, to pass on. I have recipes in Danish written on see-through parchment from great-great-grandmothers or older. Scribbled in short-hand Danish and in horrible German Script nearly impossible to read, I hang on to them for tradition. Hands in the air and spinning, singing at the top of my lungs….Tradition!!! Thank you…or Tusand Tak! (Thousand Thanks(

    1. Dear Sandra, I can’t begin to thank you for your beautifully written and most kind words. What a precious treasure you have in your Danish recipes.
      As you play the violin I know you will appreciate my violin story. On our living room, mantel sits a beautiful violin and its bow. One very cold winter day I was visiting one of my favorite antique barns. In the corner on top of a gazillion books sat a violin case, dusty and dirty beyond imagination. I asked the shopkeeper if there was a violin in the case and she said there was and offered to show it to me. Needless to say, it came home with me. She knew nothing of its history and I don’t play the violin. I just couldn’t leave it there. I felt it needed a home.
      Thank you for taking the time to comment and for your visit. I am so pleased you enjoyed the post. Happy New Year to you!

  6. Happy New Year, Sandra! This is a most beautiful post. You have such a gift and talent for writing. Traditions are so very important to me. I find great comfort and joy in them and hold them close to my heart. May the new year bring you many blessing and joy. Take care, dear friend!

    1. Hello, Shannon. Thank you so much for your kind comments. Traditions are so special and so often the importance is not realized until they are lost.
      Wishing you a wonderful new year, full of good health and joy!

  7. Oh Sandra, you hit it so perfectly. Traditions. They mean so much and I love how you highlighted so many beautiful things. The food, of course, the giving. Your home and its sanctuary. Books and memories of dear people and times. So full, so warm. So very you. There is wonderful comforting ritual in traditions, the passing down of not only things (which one treasures) but memories that can be reactualized with each time the tradition is implemented. Your choice of photos is wonderful and I really hope that is your wonderful wooden table because it is absolutely gorgeous and I’d just like to live inside that photo! All wonderful wishes for a very happy new year.

    1. Dear Jeanie: I appreciate so much your kind words and your lovely thoughts. I am sorry to say the beautiful table is not ours. Although, it really tugged at my heart. I sold one just like it before we left Virginia as it would not fit in our current kitchen. I miss that dear table and I do hope I placed it in good hands. It was a dream to have during the baking season. We had a log home in VA that we had built – it was a heartbreak to leave.
      Wishing you a wonderful week and the snow will provide you with lots of reading time. Enjoy!

  8. Happy New Year, Sandra. I love traditions that are passed from family to family. And I’m happy when new traditions are added to the mix when someone marries another with different traditions. I am so happy to have 3 cookbooks that were compiled by my aunt and cousins who collected recipes from a grand extended family. I consult those recipes frequently, and remember the person who contributed the recipe. Family belongings such as pieces of furniture and dishes always bring memories of those who gave them to us.

    1. Hello, Lorrie and a Happy New Year to you as well. I agree with your every word regarding traditions. What a treasure you have in your 3 cookbooks that were compiled by your family members. That is a real gift. We are fortunate to have many pieces that belonged to our families. Oh, the memories, priceless.

  9. Sandra, even though I’m late in commenting on this post, please know that I read every single one when my email notifies me of your newest one. They always touch my heart and I am always impressed by the beauty of the pictures and your written words. This one kept me saying oh yes all the way through. I think there is probably very little we would not agree on, no matter the subject. I hope your Christmas traditions blessed you and will again each and every year.

  10. The reposting of these gems is such a gift to us, Mike. I can feel Sandra on your shoulder, gently saying “this one, remind them of this one.” She was a beautiful writer, but all the beautiful words and phrases count for little if the thought behind such things are shallow. But Sandra didn’t know shallow. Exquisite comes to mind. And the photos you contribute are equally lovely, all part of telling a beautiful story. You keep her alive to us this way, and for that I am grateful. Sending good wishes to you for 2024.

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