For our family, the first week in a new home features a day where I traditionally make chocolate chip cheesecake cupcakes. I am a traditionalist, and I enjoy, and look forward to, my tradition of the first chocolate chip cheesecake cupcakes every time we move.
This year, I didn’t quite make the cupcakes for the first week we moved in, although I did make these for the 4th of July:
Instead of our traditional cheesecake cupcakes, the first week in this house brought a new dessert treat.
As we were stocking up on groceries in the new home, M found a cake mix he really wanted to try. So, we made a deal – if he helped me make the dessert, then I would approve of the new cake.
After living in a home with extremely limited counter-space the past couple years, I thoroughly enjoyed spreading out on the new counter-space in our new kitchen. M got to choose which order to add the colors, although looking back on it, I suspect he added them in the order I had them placed on the counter.
I think we both enjoyed spending some time creating something together, letting him take the lead on some aspects and having control over a culinary project. The end result exceeded my expectations, and M had fun eating his creation.
My switch-up in the tradition of what I bake the first week in a new house provided me with a larger metaphor for my life. With this move, I have decided that some traditions are meant to be shaken up a little – what I do at one duty location is not necessarily something I need to focus on doing at another. It’s okay for me to change my experiences a bit, and to branch out into uncharted territories.
I am thankful for being able to reprioritize my life every couple years, and grateful for being able to move as frequently as we do. I rely on my family’s traditions to keep me grounded and balanced in the midst of uncertainty.
This cake ultimately symbolized more than just a cake my son wanted to create. Instead, it symbolized that it is okay to be flexible with changes to traditions. The end result will often still be the same – the cake will still get created.
In the case of the larger life metaphor, the way I go about prioritizing my activities, volunteer work, and commitments will still lead me back to my family, provided I keep them as my end goal.
And, the ending will be just as sweet and rewarding as the desserts we choose to bake in our home.