Every person's life has milestone moments. Everyday moments matter, of course, but there are a few moments in life that should be distinguishable from the rest. That's why I want to talk about the importance of celebrating milestones, especially in your family with your kids.
Merry May, friends! This month we're reading chapter number five in the Lifegiving Home by Sally and Sarah Clarkson Days to Commemorate: Marking Growth with Celebration.
Each chapter has spoken to me deeply in its own way and this one is no exception. Sally goes into great detail outlining some of the ways they celebrate important milestones in a person's life in their family.
It's given me a renewed sense of the importance of celebrating milestones.
Watch the Video
Point of View: Being the Last of 4 Children Celebrations Were Few and Far Between
I came into motherhood with the perspective of having been the last of 4 children in my family. And I think being the last child, the baby, we sometimes get the tail end of celebrations.
What I mean is, my theory is they had gone through 4 children and life gets substantially more busy at that point. And you forget and get tired.
They'd had the big parties and celebrations and they'd thrown a million birthday parties. And all of my siblings had grown up and left home by the time the really important moments in my life started happening.
That left an impression on me all the way into early adulthood when I graduated and the moment came and went as if it was just another day. There was no big party because we'd moved from Hawaii to Missouri and left all our friends and family behind. It was just my parents and me.
Motherhood Changed My Perspectives on My Own Childhood: The Desire to do it Differently For Them
So, in fact, most of the milestones in my life have gone basically unnoticed by the community I grew up in. Where my siblings had celebrations for graduation, engagement, wedding shower, and then eventually a baby shower, I had none.
It's really easy to feel like you've not accomplished anything in life when every day feels the same as the last. Nothing feels like a big deal. There's no special day to mark the passage of time.
So many of my own milestones and hard work were never recognized by those that mattered the most to me. Which has been the driving force behind the importance of celebrating milestones for and with my children.
It brings honor to the person or event and highlights the significant accomplishments. It also reminds us of the many ways God has guided and helped us and of our responsibility to both live for Him and uphold others as they try to do the same.Sally Clarkson, The Lifegiving Home pg. 120
Why is it Important to Celebrate Milestones?
The man of our time is losing the power of celebration. Instead of celebrating, he seeks to be amused or entertained. Celebration is an active state, an act of expressing reverence or appreciation...Celebration is... giving attention to the trascendent meaning of one's actions.Abraham Joshua Hershel
Milestones are Important Because People are Important
The importance of celebrating milestones is multifaceted, here are 5 reasons I came up with
01 Distinguish Important Moments
There has to be something to distinguish important moments and days from the rest. Otherwise, all the days run together and nothing feels important or special.
02 Setting A Marker to Remember
Celebrating a major milestone with family members is the best way to commemorate those key milestones that are truly worth celebrating. It's like setting up a marker to remember when life has passed in a blink of an eye. And gives you something to look back on and say remember when?
03 Recognizing Developmental Milestones
Without taking the time as a loved one to celebrate a person's life and developmental milestones life just simply passes. Have we truly grown? These developmental milestones are the perfect opportunity to create those sorts of "ritual celebrations" like graduation ceremonies, the first day of school, or the first day of high school. Or even the simple things like celebrating a new school year with new school supplies.
04 Training Our Eyes to Recognize Growth in a Person's Life
Do we recognize good things when they happen? Even the small moments will bleed into the rest if we aren't careful.
05 Creating a Sense of Community
When you take the time to allow others to celebrate you or to celebrate others you are establishing community. A sense of worth and belonging. It creates a feeling of safety. Distinguishing big moments grows the community spirit we're all longing for and creates a healthy self-concept we need.
What is the Importance of Family Celebration?
We wanted our home to be a keeping place for sacred days, sacred commitments, and sacred moments, and this gathering of friends helped all of us remember what our days had held.Sally Clarkson, The Lifegiving Home pg. 121
The importance of celebrating milestones with your family and those who know you and love you most creates a sense of
- Accountability These celebrations do more than simply celebrate a person, it also holds them accountable for continuing to live well. In a day of informality for life commitments and stewardship, this is a way to create a meaningful moment in time.
- Community It's important to have a community of love, a home to find acceptance, comfort, help, and a stable base in a less-than-stable world.
- Identity Important moments such as these serve to create the indelible value in that community as a person worthy of noticing and appreciating. To be seen.
- Remembrance and Responsibility Remind them of their roots, faith, traditions, values, and beliefs, and of their responsibility to steward their lives well.
What are Some Other Important Milestones in Life?
There is a whole myriad of special life milestones and many that are very specific to each personality. But here's a small list of 10 important milestones you can celebrate with your family and friends
- Graduation Ceremonies
- Engagement Parties
- Promotions at Work
- Wedding Day
- Anniversary Celebrations or Family Day (as Sally puts it)
- Baby Shower & Birth
- Birthday Party
- Developmental Milestones (in a child's life, like the first day of school or first steps) or even an older child's life like getting a driver's license)
You know your loved ones best and each person has their own set of challenges and accomplishments when they meet those challenges. Whether it's a child or adult who plays instruments and has recitals, or someone who has gotten a promotion at work.
The point is to pay attention to those moments and help make them meaningful because I guarantee the lack of intention is noticed.
Humans want to share life experiences with others and it doesn't go unnoticed when others don't take note of important times in their lives.
How Do You Celebrate Milestones in Life?
The most obvious answer is to throw a party! But it doesn't even have to be formal or big fancy special events.
The point is more to mark such milestones and big moments. Make the person who's being celebrated the guest of honor and send them into the next season of new stages of life with a new goal.
- Throw a Party big or small
- Go Out to Eat
- Have a family dinner at home
- Invite Friends Over
- Have a BBQ
- Go Do Something Special
- Give a Meaningful Gift: Time, Money, or Handmade Item, etc.
I took the time to create all the decorations for this party. Each one of us took an element and colored them to give it a personal touch. It's the thought and intention that really counts. And makes a person feel special.
Celebrating Milestones Touches Lives and its Important Work to Set That Tone
The way we touch a child's life matters both in the long term and the short term. And this very important life work takes place primarily inside the walls of home.Sally Clarkson, The Lifegiving Home pg. 128
I want to remember even the small moments, but the truth is I don't have a great memory. So what can we do to help ourselves burn that special moment in our minds?
3 Ways to Distinguish Important Events that I like to Use in My Home
- Photo Album One way I'm fighting memory overload is to create personal photo albums for each of my kids. I want them to be able to look back and have proof of all of the memorable milestones we shared together. It can feel like a daunting task sometimes, but it's been so worth it to see them look back and I can tell them the stories of their life. Photographs really have amazing power.
- Family Traditions Another one of many wonderful ways to ensure you remember is to create family traditions. We talked about Rhythms, Routines, and Rituals in January's post. When you create that habit of celebrating each other, it just sticks in your mind that much more firmly. Like the daily flow of a family dinner.
- Ceremony & Awards Little tokens like a certificate or award might seem childish, but for some people, they really matter. They're meaningful and a physical item to prove they've accomplished something great. This is why they still hold graduation ceremonies. I'm coming up to a 15-year anniversary and I think an anniversary award sounds great.
I hope I have given you some inspiration and ideas for ways you can celebrate as well as an understanding of the importance of celebrating milestones in your family.
Thank you so much for stopping by!