International Family Traditions for Celebrating New Year’s Essay
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I interviewed a few of my relatives instead of just one so I could get a mix of how my family does different things. To start off with some the traditions we celebrate almost every major holiday. In January we celebrate new years and every year we buy as many fireworks as we can, we also make bar b ques and have all the family come over. We start off with a fire in our backyard, so we can stay warm and we usually have a party on new years eve.
My dad is always the one to cook the food, the main thing we love for him to cook is chicken wings and beef fajitas. Once the sun starts to go down everyone comes over and starts to drink and we play a few games. Our number one game we like to play is Uno when there is a winner that winner gets to pick who is going to take shots. Once it starts to get dark the kids pop a few fireworks, but we don’t do all of them until midnight hits. Once there is a minute or two before midnight we make sure we have all the big fireworks ready to go and we start our countdown. When it hits midnight, we let all the fireworks go off and they look very beautiful, this is a tradition that we have been doing for years and I enjoy it every time.
The next tradition we do is Halloween, that is one of my favorite holidays my dad’s birthday is on that day and its double the fun. We make our house into a haunted every year for the kids to come through and get candy. All of us in the house dress up in a costume, I am usually a vampire, my mom is always a clown, and my dad dresses up as something scary. We also throw a Halloween party for my dad and we make sure to decorate the cake like a grave. I always make a chocolate cake for him and then I put white frosting on top then I crumble up Oreo cookies to make it look like dirt. I then use the cookies that are kind of oval shape to look like grave stones and I write RIP on them. I do this every year for him and it comes out amazing. Before we start giving candy away at night we go trick or treating first. In my opinion, someone is never too old to go out and get candy I cherish every moment with my parents and siblings, so I enjoy going out trick or treating every year. Every year on Thanksgiving we head to my hometown in George West TX, my grandma is always the one to cook food. Our Thanksgiving is a little different we must go to my mom’s side of the family and then my dad’s, so its double the amount of food we get to eat.
Every Thanksgiving my we get my great grandma out of the nursing home and bring her to my other grandma’s house with us. She cooks about ten different things from two kinds of turkeys, ham, green beans, mashed potatoes and many desserts. Before we eat we take a family picture every single year just in case one of us doesn’t make it to the next Thanksgiving. Once we finish at my grandmother’s house we head to my aunt’s house, that’s the wild side of my family so it is always a party when we are around them. She also makes turkey and stuffing and since I don’t eat much I decided to eat food and my grandma’s house and dessert at my aunt’s house, so no one will say I didn’t eat their food.
The last major holiday we celebrate is Christmas of course and every year we go all out. I love to decorate the outside and inside of our house right after Thanksgiving is over. My moms favorite color is white and red so that’s what we do every year. Our Christmas tree is always red with apples and red bows and we have never changed the color. My parents always buy me and my brother and sister many gifts. I get to wrap their gifts, but my mom never lets me wrap my own no matter how old I get she doesn’t let me see them. By the time Christmas comes our tree is stacked with gifts underneath it. If my dad is home on Christmas, then we wait until the morning to open them but if he must work on that day then we open them Christmas eve before he leaves to work. As I and my siblings get older we try to keep the spirit but slowly it fades away.
Some childhood games my dad used to play was the all-time favorite hide and seek of course and he and his friends would all be involved to make it more fun. Since they lived in a very small town they would spread out in the neighbor hoods and find each other. Sometimes they would all get together and play baseball at the park and just make their own games. My dad even made up of this game called drive fast or get passed, he and all his friends would gather up their old school cars and race and whoever won had to tell the other person what they wanted them to do. I thought about this game and I thought it was kind of cool and I’m sure it would be dangerous but back then no one bothered them, and it was normal. Back then when my mom would hang out with my dad as friends they would play the game spin the bottle at parties they would go to. I thought that was very unique and old school because now and days our parties are wild and uncontrollable. They also had a game they played when they went fishing and whoever caught the most fish would win, the loser had to take a dip in the river. The games they played were crazy, but they seemed somewhat fun.
Some beauty secrets my mom had been she would rub some of that slimy stuff she got from a plant of her face to help her with breakouts. I think therefore now she has a smooth face and she never breaks out. She usually does her makeup how I do but she doesn’t use as much foundation since her face is sensitive. Back then my mom never died her hair, so she never damaged it and it was really long.
Treating hair with a variety of harsh chemicals like hair colors, hair extensions, hair dyes, is one of the reasons our hair damages. Blow drying, treating hair to excessive heat while straightening, perming, and certain hairstyles like braids are other causes of hair damage. Hair can have a dry texture due to chlorine water while washing, even over using hair products can have a bad effect on your hair. Damaged hair may lead to problems like dandruff, hair loss etc. but it can be treated at home with effective damaged hair home remedies, such as ginger it can be used as a damaged hair home remedy. I usually combined the ginger with sesame to make silky conditioning oil that will protect and leave my hair smelling good and feeling good. My grandma is the one that taught me this method and it has worked very well for me. Once I combine both the products it’s like an oil texture I massage it into my scalp for a couple of minutes then I let it sit. This remedy works well for damaged hair. Another home remedy my grandma has taught me is for sinus infections and this one is a lifesaver. When we have a cough or a runny nose she warms us some honey, lemon, and water and it clears my nose right away. Whenever I get sick she usually makes chicken soup, so I can eat something warm and I never stay sick long. Some other home remedies are when my mom’s kids start not feeling good she is very traditional she rubs their foreheads with an egg and says a prayer. She believes that if someone makes a comment about our eyes for example then she always wants them to touch our eyes. And if we start feeling sick out of nowhere she thinks its because of someone
got us sick by their compliment.
When it comes to cooking my grandma makes the best food, to start off her banana pudding is amazing. She starts off with cream cheese and mixes it until its fluffy. She then beats in condensed milk, the pudding package and the regular milk in. Once she is done she puts it in a glass bowl and keeps it in the fridge for a little and then tops it off with bananas and vanilla wafers. It comes out amazing I can eat it all day. Another dish she makes is stew, she usually makes the stew with a wide variety of vegetables, spices and ties it together with a thick sauce. First, she fills up a big pot with water. She doesn’t fill it up too much because the vegetables take up space. Then, she begins to through in all the plants based on how long they cook. She usually dumps in the onions, zucchini, potatoes, carrots, corn on the cob and a block of beef broth at first. Then, she waits for about 30 minutes before she dumps in the mushrooms, green peppers, garlic, and tomatoes in it. After all that, she takes out a frying pan and starts to brown the meat up. She usually spices the beef cubes before throwing it into the water. Some people like to skip this part, but it adds more flavor. Once she finishes browning the meat, you throw it in with the rest of the mixture. Add some salt and pepper at this stage as well. After about an hour or so, she then thickens the entire dish. The way to do this is to take a bit of flour, like 1/8th of a cup and 3/4th of milk and mix it well. She likes to make sure to get rid of all the clumps of flour in the mixture. Once mixed, she adds it to the stew, and you’ll instantly see the color change to a light brownish color. After about 20 more minutes the stew is ready to eat. This is one of my favorite food dishes to eat and it helps me when my nose is stuffed up because it’s so hot.
Going on to some family tales about four years ago I and my family took a trip to Colorado. The drive took about seventeen hours and it was the longest drive of my life, we stopped in a couple places before we got there as well. The first place we stopped was Roswell and I have never seen a small town full of an alien theme before. Apparently, aliens have been sited there before so now everyone that lives there believes I aliens. I thought it was very unique that they experienced something like that personally I haven’t but one day it would be cool too if I’m safe. The next place we got to was Carlsbad New Mexico, this place was amazing we stayed there a couple nights. In the middle of nowhere, there was this place in the middle of these huge mountains called sitting bull falls, it was this place that had a beautiful waterfall and water holes to swim in. I thought it was so pure and natural, the smell was just clean, and the water was perfectly clear, and the temperature was nice and fresh. We were even able to hike a little where the water was coming down from the waterfall and at the very top, there was another waterfall it was breathtaking. There were clear water holes and people were just jumping on them and swimming around. I plan to go back to that place very soon. Another place we visited before we got to Colorado was a place called royal gorge. This place had my adrenaline going, to start off me and a friend got on this zip line that was thousands of feet in the air attached to two sides of mountains. At first, I was scared because it shot us out at about 50 miles per hour but once I got through that the view was amazing. You could see people that look like ants at the very bottom and there was people water rafting at the bottom as well. We also were able to get on this bridge that went from one mountain to another and looking down was so scary. It was so high in the air that if anyone falls there is not a chance of survival. There was also so many people walking and driving on the bridge you could feel it moving as you walked with the wind blowing. The weather was amazing compared to how it is here in San Antonio, it never got about 75 degrees and it was always fresh. The last thing we did there before we took off to Colorado got in this cage that took us down a hill and it was the steepest hill I have every seen. The view was gorgeous, but my heart was pumping the whole way. I hope I can visit this place again because the views were just speechless, and I recommend anyone to take a trip there. Once we arrived in Colorado the real fun started, we stayed at this place called Estes Park. The place my parents picked out for us to stay was a small cottage and there was a river behind us that was drop dead pretty. The water was freezing but it was flowing and clear. We got to ride horses through the hills and we even got to try water rafting. Looking back on our trip this was defiantly a family tale worth talking about all the time. I and my family had a lot of fun and we’re hoping we can visit there again.
My dad told me this crazy folk tale that happened to me when I was about five, my dad took decided to go to my uncle’s house one day and took me and my cousin with him. He had this old pickup truck that was lifted and had big tires on it, he ended up getting off quick and left me and my cousin in the truck. Since the truck was sitting on the hill I guess I decided it was okay to put it in neutral and the truck took off down the hill. My uncle and dad freaked out so bad they started chasing the truck, apparently, I was laughing, and my cousin was crying. He was finally able to jump in the truck and stop it, but he was terrified he told me I was lucky he was able to jump in there before something bad happened. My grandma would tell me stories of how my uncle would mess around with the Ouija board. One time she said he was trying to play it in her house and the lights started flicking off and on. She did n’t know he was playing it, but she started to see shadow figures and found out what he was doing. From this day she now believes in ghost and demons according to her, she saw a demon. I have never experienced anything like that and I hope I don’t but her telling me the story I thought it was unbelievable.
A family tale worth talking about is when I and my family first went to a waterpark, I was about 15 years old. It was in New Braunfels at Schlitterbahn this is the best water park I have ever got to visit. It has about three parks in one, every year for my birthday we stay there, and the park lets us go in an hour early and stay out until midnight. The rides are extremely fun, and the best part is the dip n dots they sell. I cannot leave without getting me a bowl of that ice cream.