You might be thinking, who the heck is Team Ricafort? Well, you see, before I was an Agustin, I was a Ricafort. And I adore that family. 🙂
Our family is the epitome of Filipino collectivism. Talk about tight-knit family members. I am grateful for my parents who made sure we are both close to our maternal and paternal-sides of the family. I am just as close to my cousins from my mother’s side but only to a handful. Maybe because we used to live so close by our aunts and uncles from my father’s side, that’s why I feel I am close to more of them.
In Team Ricafort, we would always have our annual reunion every Christmas. It started way back even before I was born. My Papa and his seven other siblings who were living in Manila would gather for this one day occasion and have fun. It was good old fun with games and treats for the kids, and chattering and some drinking sessions for the adults.
That’s the reason why my cousins and I are really close to each other. I think my grandparents has over 50 grandchildren and great-grand children just from the first and second generation alone. I am even amazed how our family is close even to our second- and even third-cousins.
Another tradition that my paternal family has is calling our aunts and uncles the same way their children would call them. My cousins call my Mama and Papa Mama Grace and Papa Mayo, or sometimes, just Mama and Papa. I would call my aunts and uncles Daddy, Mommy, Nanay or Tatay. The only Uncle I call Tito (that’s Filipino for “Uncle), is my Papa’s younger brother because he didn’t have kids yet when I started talking.
Now that the second generation Ricafort’s are all grown up, I feel that it is now in our hands to keep the tradition going. Even if we live far apart because we have our own families now, even if we have lost some of the original “founders”, I still believe we should continue what our parents have started. I am pretty sure they would love that. I also want my son and future children to experience the same fun growing up not only with my siblings, but with my cousins as well. There’s nothing like going out and having fun with cousins. There’s nothing like keeping family traditions strong and passing it on to the next generation.
How about you? What family traditions do you have?