Friday, December 23, 2011

Countdown To Christmas

Countdown time to Christmas has begun. Last night we saw our grandsons and the last thing they said was, "Tomorrow is the Eve before Christmas Eve. See you in two days!" It's been a long time since I've felt such child-like excitement about Christmas.

For more years than I can recall, we had separate Christmas celebrations with my family. My parents had been divorced since I was 10 years old, so over time we spent Christmas Eve and day in the car traveling from house to house to my Mom's, my Dad's, and then to my in-law's. It wasn't very relaxing and I felt badly taking the kids all over town when I knew they wanted to stay hime to play with their toys.

In 1987 I decided to solve the issue of multiple celebrations, and it turned out to be one of the best Christmases ever. My brother could not remember having Christmas as a family with Mom and Dad, so I took the opportunity to invite everyone for dinner and to open gifts. I was a little nervous, but it was a day that my brother and I will always remember.

This week my heart hurts a little. It's the second year without Great Grandma, the last of the older generation. We miss her so much because she always put family first. Christmas is still centered on family but as the dynamics change, our experiences change too. On Sunday everyone will come to our house to open presents and share a meal. This year they'll come in the afternoon, following their own time for gift giving, church, and time with the other grandparents. But our children and their precious children will be with us - it doesn't get any better than that.

Merry Christmas to you, however you spend the day, and if we don't touch bases before, have a Happy New Year too.

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