Sunday, April 29, 2012

You Are Special: Celebrating the ones we love

Life is a gift, and we should take every opportunity to celebrate. Birthdays, especially, are a great time to do something special and to remind people we love that they are special. Today we celebrated the birthday of my oldest daughter. So it was an occasion for one of our favorite family traditions: bringing out the cherished red, You Are Special plate. This was started by my Mom years ago, and I'm proud to carry it on and share with others.

My Mom gave me a red Your Are Special plate at my bridal shower. It comes with  a special permanent marker that can be used to write notes and dates of special occasions on the plate. Mom inscribed a wedding wish for me and my husband and signed and dated the back of the plate. Since she died a few short years later, the indelible handwritten note became all the more precious to me.

On the eve of every birthday in our home, I take the plate out and set the table for breakfast.  The plate and decorations and gifts are laid out for the birthday person. Each year, it takes on some minor enhancement to make it a little different - some confetti, or flowers, a candle, or balloons. Waking up to the Your Are Special plate is a tradition everyone in our family looks forward to on their birthday.

But the plate can be used for other occasions, too: an exceptional report card, promotion at work, anniversary, graduation, or just a random day when someone we love needs a reminder that they are special.

I've bought a few of these plates as gifts for weddings, to pass on the gift my Mom gave me. It's a great way to help newlyweds start their own special traditions celebrating the loved ones in their lives.

What are the traditions you've built into your lives to celebrate the ones you love?

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