It is funny how some traditions get started.  Most everyone has some like everyone else.  You know the kind I mean. Like having turkey for Thanksgiving dinner, wearing green on St Patrick day, and getting a picture of the kids with Santa Clause. But some are special for a state, or a town, or even a family. Our family has a tradition all it's own. Every Christmas we gather for a big dinner. We all sit at the table and after the blessing is said, a cup of hot corn mush is served to each person at the table. After our corn mush has been eaten, we start the regular Christmas dinner We have all heard the story of why we have the corn mush. We all know it by heart. But still, as we fill our plates with great holiday foods, we listen intently to Grandmother tell about how our corn mush tradition got started.
     "Many years ago our ancestors were migrating to the land of the Big Water. They did not know this land, and winter was on them. It was a hard winter. There was little food. Many died. When they could go no farther, they made camp and tried to last out the winter. For warmth and security they lived all in one large dwelling. What food they had was shared. Hunters went out each day to try to bring in some food. But they could find no game at all. Finally the food was gone and it seemed all would starve. They all prayed that there would be food found in the morning. 
     Before dawn they all awoke as if they had been called awake. It was so still and quiet. The sky was so dark except for a large bright star. Suddenly there was a man walking toward the dwelling. The people looked at him in surprise. They did not know him. He had no weapons. He was alone. They had no food to offer him.  They told him they had only water to offer, but he was welcome to come inside for a drink and rest.
       When he was inside the dwelling, he ask for a pot of hot water. With the hot water he made corn mush. He gave each person there a cup of mush. As they ate the mush, he told them he was sent to give them life. He said that on this day he would give to them enough mush to last until they could find food. He said that to give life was the reason he had been born.
     When all had eaten and were full, the man left. When the people looked outside there was a large sack full of ground corn. More than enough to keep everyone alive all winter. Before long the hunters found game to feed the people. But they did not forget the stranger with the corn mush. Each year they would all eat a cup of corn mush to honor Him that gave them new life.
     To this day, we, the descendants of those people, eat a cup of corn mush each Christmas day. To honor Him and to remind us to give thanks."
     Yes we have our own tradition in this family. Perhaps your family has one also. If you do, I hope you honor it and never forget why you have it.  A good tradition is something to be shared and passed down from one generation to the next. 
     Have a great Holiday, from my family to yours!  Enjoy your corn mush.

                                               Merry Christmas !
Wandering Thoughts
music: Chesnuts Roasting