I've only been Orthodox for 4 years, and have never been a good singer. Consequently, I do not know a lot of tones or special troparia for special times of the year.
When I sing to the kids at night, we sometimes do some vespers hymns ("Lord, I Call Upon Thee" or "Oh Gladsome Light"); but often I just sing old hymns from my college days ("Create in Me a Clean Heart" is a good one, straight from Psalm 50) or make up songs.
The made-up songs go something like this:
Beautiful St. Elizabeth, pray for us... that we may be beautiful, with Christ in us, just like you... and so forth.
What we do now is kind of sweet, but I'd like to add actual troparia or kontakia for the day or season if I knew them. Do any of you do this, or know where to find such songs - not just the words, but guidance on how to sing them. Best would be audio of someone singing them. Ideas? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I can post them directly to the blog.
Gifts List #4 : Little Builder couldn't sleep and wouldn't stay in bed. Papa suggested he go over to the icon corner, do prostrations and pray. I didn't think he was actually going to do it, but as I swept the kitchen, I heard his little voice very slowly, so as to get it right before God in the name of the Father, and Son, and Holy Spirit. I swept my way over to a better view and my heart smiled.