Where ever you are, however you celebrate, whatever your condition or station – we wish for you the most blessed holiday season.
I’ve always loved the Christmas Holidays. I have taken vacation at this time of the year for as long as I can remember and always since I’ve been a Mom.
We always have a live family tree that we go out and cut down – it is a great time that I love!
Christmas Eve, we have a nice dinner, either watch a Christmas movie classic or go view Christmas Lights (though we’ve decided not to this year as they seem to be less and less apparent each year), then we each open one gift. For many, many years it has a been a Christmas ornament. I spend tons of time trying to find the ornament for each member of our family that matches their current interests or is indicative of their year somehow. They now buy one for me too. Our family tree now has only ornaments that mean something special to each of us and have all been gifts. My son typically grouses about “getting another ornament,” but I remind him that one year he won’t get one from me and he will know how special they all were.
I also have a tree in my dining room. I broke down and bought a fake tree last year for that room and it is decorated with wine/vineyard items plus special ornaments given to me by my friends over the years. Yes, I’m close to Clark Griswold.
Christmas Day we all open gifts and then have a great brunch with ebelskeivers then a relaxing dinner later on.
The week between Christmas and New Year’s, we all do a bit of sale shopping, but mostly we relax, de-stress, watch movies and read lots of books (mostly fiction in my case). It is a wonderful time and we all look forward to it.
Those are my family traditions – whatever yours are, I hope you and yours have a wonderful, blessed and peaceful holiday season filled with the traditions, moments and people that make you happiest.
Peace be yours.
I don’t just mean over-eating, though there is a fair bit of that going on here too. I mean that I’m going to ask your patience while I act on my self-indulgent motivations and give my thanks.
If you are in the U.S., today is Thanksgiving, the day of the year set aside to thank God for the Pilgrims surviving the first brutal winter in the “new world.” Many of us in the states today are spending time with family, with friends, eating a lot and probably watching football. Some of us will spend time today volunteering at shelters to help dish out meals or cook to feed the hungry. Some of us “adopted” families for the holiday, families who are enduring hard times and for whom this holiday might otherwise just be another day to struggle and, perhaps, experience hunger. Far too many Americans are stationed far from home today, and many, many of those are in harm’s way because they stand in service of their country for all of us.
In an hour or so, we will sit down for a wonderful meal and at some point, will each share what we are thankful for today and give our thanks to God. I’m going to take this opportunity to practice mine!
I am thankful to God for:
- Those who are far from home and following the call of their nation to take up arms for us.
- Being born into my family, which while not perfect – because whose is – but is perfectly mine. Their wide-ranging personalities and natures gave me a great base to grow from. We are far from family today – they are all over the country and we are here, but they are close in heart and thought.
- Having a great job that I love, allows me to fill my need to serve a purpose and make a difference and work with and for simply incredible people every single day.
- For my husband Bob who puts up with me, is devoted & hard-working and is supportive of whatever I do.
- For my daughter Alicia who is a wonderful person and just a fabulous young woman that I am very proud of and could simply not love more. She is passionate, intelligent and fun.
- For my son Tim who has a very kind soul, an open heart and a keen intellect plus who has a great sense of humor (which, since he is so reserved might surprise many people)
- I’m so blessed for my family – they are loving, supportive and absolutely believe in me – just as I believe in them. While we are “without” family here in Wisconsin, as long as I have them near, I am never ever alone.
- For my friends, all over the country and the world, who have taught me so much, have given me so much and with whom I can share my quirks and my passions.
- Last but not least, my Grandmother, Juanita Reed, left the world 4 years ago today and my Grandfather Ray Reed, has been gone nearly 20 years now. I thank God today, as I often do, for them. I miss them still.
I hope you and yours have a safe, peaceful and happy Thanksgiving.