Holiday traditions

When I was growing up, my family always sat around the TV to watch the Rose Parade early each January 1st. I remember some years where my parents pulled out the sofa bed and let me sleep in front of the TV to be ready in the morning. We would sit and watch the pretty floats and comment on the bands.

My dad played trombone in his high school band and I went on to play clarinet in high school and in the Army. Marching in parades was a part of my life. I think those early years of watching the Rose Parade was part of the reason I wanted to play in a marching band.

When I was in that high school band, we started decorating Rose Parade floats as a fund raiser. One of the float making companies hired us to put the flowers and other outside decorations on a float. We had to come up with 2 eight-hour shifts of workers for 3 or 4 days before the first. I remember pulling many double shifts over the years. That experience provided another link, making me feel close to this grand parade.

For me the Rose Parade and the Rose Bowl game are a major part of celebrating the New Year. Unfortunately, my husband and kids have never been interested. They find the whole thing beyond boring to watch. So, I sit each January 1st tuned into the Home and Garden Network. They always have the best coverage with no commercials.

I guess this family tradition will die with me. But I will keep it up as long as I can–watching the bands negotiate the corner and imagining those decorators placing each seed, bud, leaf, husk and flower on those floats. Okay, that sounded a bit down–so I will add this. I’m having fun! I still love watching this parade. Later, I may even watch the game (gotta root for Penn State because I’m a UCLA alum. This means my two favorite teams are UCLA and whoever is playing USC).


  1. […] the Grand Marshall of the Rose Parade (okay, I grew up in Southern California so the Rose Parade is high on my list of great events). As we say good-bye to 2008,the search is on for the 2009 Pacesetter […]

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