One of my favorite traditions our little family has, is that of bonfires in the backyard.
We don't really do it every weekend, but we do it a few times a month. Its so fun for everyone to run around together- helping to prepare dinner together, being careful and excited around the fire, and roasting marshmallows at last- right before bed.
This is a tradition that we started in our last house, where we lived with the Laurents, and somehow it still feels strange that they aren't there with us while we are building the fire. I expect another little blond child with dirt and soot on her face (from trying to eat sticky marshmallows that were probably dropped on the ground.)
So, Elizabeth, just know that we still miss you every time we do this!
The truth is, if my kids are in the backyard, I usually try to ignore them most of the time! They play or explore, race bikes, dig in mud, and I read or work in the garden- or go back inside and try to have some alone-time! But when we have a bonfire in the middle of the yard, we all stay together! I can very easily imagine them forgetting it's there and running right into it. So our weekend bonfires actually turn into a really nice time for us to sit and talk or play together.
Travis teaches the boys how to help build a fire and tells them stories of campouts and adventures from when he was a boy scout, and they look forward to the time that they can be boy scouts too! We all swing in the hammock, or take turns pushing each other, and have a really nice time- even before the hotdogs arrive (which we all know is, sadly, my kids' favorite food.)
So, if you think pizza is gross (it kind of is- especially if you have to eat it gluten-free like we do- and then it's expensive too!) then I would highly recommend changing your "Friday Night Pizza Tradition" (which everyone in America seems to celebrate) to "Friday Night Bonfire Tradition," which is more fun, more delicious, makes you feel kind of like you went camping, and doesn't involve any video games. And it smells better, but doesn't make your house smell weird the next morning. Basically, it's better than pizza in every way. Except that cold hotdogs can't compete with cold pizza for next-morning breakfast, that's true.
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