In an effort to create family unity, and a visual reminder of what we stand for as a family we started creating a family flag. This is a tradition we do every year changing the flag to match our newest family theme and hopefully creating a reminder of what we as a family want to accomplish. I have found it important to include all family members in the process and each year we have come up with some pretty awesome flags. The kids favorite was when I painted their feet and let them walk all over the family flag (stand for righteousness 2012). With each year the kids get more and more creative, and I have to get more creative so the finished product is something we can all feel good about displaying during the year. There are a few ground rules we use to allow everyone to feel a part of the process (after all it is to create family unity).
1. Everyone must be a part of the theme vote! Each year we sit down and write what we think should be the theme for the year. After going through the theme ideas we discuss which theme or combination of themes best meets our needs for the year. Then we take a vote. The decision has to be unanimous or it is back to the drawing board (hint: I typically find a way to combine parts of as many ideas as possible, it makes it easier to come to that unanimous vote).
2. Everyone must have a part in the flag creation! From hand prints, to finger prints to traced hands, we have made sure there truly is a part of everyone in our flag, it creates ownership and connects everyone to the effort. Over the years as the kids change and grow the part they play will change and hopefully we will move away from just body part flags, but until then I also get a keepsake of my growing kids from year to year! I love it!
3. The flag and theme must be prominently displayed in the house! This is where my creativity skills have to go into overdrive. Sometimes it is hard to create a flag that includes everyone that I want to display with my other home decor. I try to only offer color options that already match what we have in the home and I reserve the right to “clean up” what I need to in the making of the flag. Not altering their creativity, but adding to it as needed. Honestly I haven’t had to do much and our finished product has been fun to look at every year.