Traditions are powerful things.

Today, I was baking my family’s most traditional holiday cookie. While I carefully rolled the dough, cut the shapes and baked the cookies (which still require frosting and sprinkles), I was thinking about the fact that there has never been a Christmas in my life without this particular treat. The recipe comes from my Great Grandmother and was part of my growing up. I have made them faithfully every year since leaving my childhood home and my children have grown up with them, too. They are a lot of work, but sharing a plate of those cookies with a neighbor, with a cup of tea,  or with my family are moments I treasure. Somehow, it feels like the holidays can’t come without these cookies.

Quilting is an art form that also links me to tradition. I feel a connection to the past and to everyone who’s ever sewn together scraps of fabric to create beautiful, functional, art. I made my first quilt when I was seventeen. It was a Sunbonnet Sue pattern, which is about as traditional as you can get! I made it from scraps of fabric that I had left over from a garment I had previously sewn.

I would say that I have a quiet reverence for old quilts. Whether they are intricate pieces or scrappy delights. Whether they were made for display, or for cuddling under. Even when I’m designing a modern quilt or sewing with modern fabrics, there is still a certain knowledge that I am part of a long-standing tradition.

For me, that’s a great thing.

Are there traditions you feel connected to? I’d love to hear about them.

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