“The less there is to justify a traditional custom, the harder it is to get rid of it.”
Traditions serve so many incredible purposes. They bring us together. They keep us together.
But the funniest thing about them? Despite rarely understanding where they originated from or why, we nonetheless feel compelled to always keep them–and find an indescribable comfort in doing so.
And this week, I started a few new traditions with some early holiday cheer and more tacos to last a lifetime, while also celebrating some old traditions with a pre-feast run and giving thanks with my favorite (and admittedly wacky) Italian dishes + family.
The week began on Sunday–without a doubt my day of choice. Along with my roommates and greatest friends, we endeavored into the Ohio country side to spread some premature holiday cheer by cutting down our very own real live Chirstmas tree.
Needless to say the entire experience was indescribably hilarious.
And even despite unexpected inflation of cost, my roommate Jana was absolutely correct: You cannot put a price on joy. And with some hot cider + a hay ride + homemade grilled cheese + a day with my favorite people on earth, joy I got plenty of.
This wonderful day continued with yet another tradition near and dear to my heart. My friends and I take turns making dinner and snuggling up to some Walking Dead to conclude each Sunday evening. And this week did not disappoint with four–that’s right, FOUR–kinds of tacos.
Fast forward a few days, and suddenly I found myself at the threshold of unsurprisingly my favorite holiday–that all-holy third November Thursday, a sacred day wholly revolved around food + family + more food.
The day began with my traditional pre-feast run and a lovely morning coffee while my childhood home slowly filled with the indescribably wonderful smells of Thanksgiving.
And while those smells consisted partially of the customary turkey + stuffing + sweet potatoes, as a fully Italian family, we inevitably can’t have a holiday without the addition of a few traditional Italian dishes. Particularly, my father’s perfectly layered, as close to heaven as it gets, lasagna.
This is hardly your average lasagna, believe me–this is expert level layered hand rolled pasta + homemade sauce + enough ricotta to last a lifetime. Andiamo, kids. Here’s to perpetually wonderful full bellies.
And despite the many miles that will necessarily be run this week, every single ricotta filled bite was worth it and more.
Because whether they’re old or new, traditions live and breathe not because of the physical details or the unexplainable reasoning behind them, but rather because of the people you share them with and the priceless moments they gift. And for that, I am thankful.
That and tacos. Tacos and lasagna. Just like the Pilgrims and Indians.
Happy Thanksgiving, kids.
Run far, eat well, drink better.