A Family Tradition

Every family has traditions. Some of them are very intentional, and some of them just develop over time. 

Here in Cauldron Country, early April can be spectacular, or awful. But for many years running now, Easter Sunday has dawned bright, cheerful, and sunny. The kind of day songs and poetry are written about. And if it’s nice outside, the Bertelsens are going to be out in it! As a consequence, over time, everyone in the family has come to plan on a beautiful Easter burn, at my house, replete with food, drink, festive clothing, and general merry-making.

Looking back at photos from the past several years, a few things really jump out at me. One, is that I’m getting older. Which is better than the alternative. Some of the folks in the photos are no longer with us. Most notably my dad, who passed away recently. Another is that it’s the people, and the tradition itself, that are important. There are friends, nephews, spouses, ex-spouses, parents and kids. The party details come and go. Eggs, dyed or deviled, which wild game gets served, the wines, and all the rest, meld into a bittersweet mélange of memory. But the fact that we were there, together, laughing, sharing, bickering over Bloody Mary ingredients and fire techniques – that’s the real takeaway.

The photos aren’t professional. They are typically shot from phones, mostly shot one-handed, (as the other typically cradles a cocktail) and capture the back yard in sundry states of either dress or dishevelment. Honestly, my place isn’t that fancy. But it’s where my family gathers to celebrate together. A lot of it has to do with the Cauldron.

I always tell people that we don’t make a fire product. We sell the hosting experience. And over time, hosting the event is the most important thing, because that’s what becomes the tradition.

Get out there and have yourself a fabulous spring, and Happy Easter.