One of the things I love about holidays are the ‘routine-ness’ of them. Yes, we may introduce new traditions every year, but the old ones are still there — perhaps evolved — but there nonetheless.

And sometimes those traditions have absolutely nothing to do with the holiday being celebrated. Which is why today I’m sharing our family (un)usual ones…

Group Sing-A-Long to Alice’s Restaurant. In it’s entirety. Somewhere during my elementary school years, my father decided that listening to the anti-war song by Arlo Gutherie was the perfect way to prime the turkey. Every year as he preps dinner (Dad does the cooking around in our extended family), he puts the song on, turns it up and we all chime in: “You can get anything you want at Alice’s Restaurant.”

Candy Houses: This is a tradition my husband introduced into our family. Everything Thanksgiving morning, we get out the graham crackers, frosting and assorted candy to create our own edible cottages. It’s a contest. Last year, my sister’s boyfriend won. Rookie and all. I suspect he may go down this year…

Turkey Pot Pies: One gripe my husband has with my family is that we never have any Thanksgiving leftovers. It all goes into turkey pot pies. Last year, Pat had to bribe my father to give him some turkey and stuffing to save before making the pies.

The Tournament: Every year, the tournament starts out innocently enough. What kind of tournament? Well, that depends. One year it was ping pong. Another year it was chess, another it was darts — even cribbage made an appearance at one point. Who knows what it will be this year. Starts as a friendly competition, usually ends in blood. But hey, it’s tradition.

What are your family (un)usual traditions?

… and Happy Thanksgiving from the whole (cool) progeny family!