What does Christmas mean to me?
So many of you who know me personally know that my favorite holiday is yes…Christmas.
It is a time of comfort that includes celebration, peace, togetherness, love and joy. Some of my best memories from my childhood are at Christmas Time. Here is one of my favorite memories. Every year my family would travel to my Uncles House. My uncle had 100 acres of land where steers, horses, dogs, & cats would roam, and all be surrounded by snow and nature. I would sit inside with the family talking, watching Christmas Story and wait for my aunt to serve Christmas dinner. Now, I was the child who always disappeared after dinner and where was I? Well, simply everyone knew they could find me in the horse stall talking to the horses, brushing their manes, and well sneaking them apples for some cute tricks (Ice Man was my trickster). This is what brought me so much peace, love & joy. I had peace watching the horses trust me and be confident in me no matter where I was, love for the elegant animal in which was standing in front of me, and joy because I was simply in the presence of a creature that I think is a magnificent creation.
Fast forward several years and new traditions were born. Taking my own children to cut down a real Christmas tree was started. I had this memory as a kid as well. And let’s just say they are some good memories – mainly the memory of my older sister getting trapped under the tree and me just laughing constantly refusing to help!!! I wanted my kids to have the joy of Christmas just like me. To know that it is a season of hope, love, joy, and spirit. There is nothing that beats the smell of a fresh cut Douglas fir pine tree, okay maybe a little cinnamon added (I am a cinnamon lover). Cutting a tree with me is no light task either. Have you ever seen Chevy Chase Christmas Vacation. Well, that is me. Just like my dad I pick the biggest tree to cut down – I mean the whole family stands around and touches fingers – if they barely touch well that is the tree to get!! I LOVE HUGE CHRISTMAS TREES. And let’s not forget white lights only. I AM NOT A COLORED LIGHTS fan at all. LOL. Yes, I am a picky tree person.
Moving past the trees and lights is my next favorite Christmas activity. Driving to see Christmas Lights. I am a huge light viewer. We travel all across Missouri and Illinois to see lights – for me yes me!!! I love to not only see the lights myself but to also see the expression on my children’s face when they see the lights. Kids have so much expression within them when they see new and bright things. My love of Christmas has started to shine within my children as well and to say I am a proud mom is an understatement.
A new tradition I have recently started within my home is Santas Gift Giveback. Every year we have a Santa sack that gets filled with toys that the children no longer use or need. These toys are then left in the sack for Santa on Christmas Eve to take back with him to give to children in need. This was something I wanted to do with my children to teach them at that giving is important and that there are children in need and if we can help them then to give it their all and help! SO far this is a great tradition I have started and will continue to do it for years to come.
A fun fact about me is that I LOVE TO DO CRAFTS. Besides being a huge scrapbooker I also make homemade ornaments with and for my kids. Every year I chart the height of each child and then I place it in a glass ornament with their name and year. This is a neat way to see how each child has grown over the years. Along with the height ornament I also create a unique ornament for each child. For example, this year my daughter is getting a deeper love for soccer. So, I plan on getting small soccer ball charms, fake snow, and a few other soccer trinkets and placing them in a glass ornament and then labeling the outside with her name and year in vinyl. Let’s just say our huge tree has unique ornaments all over it and I love seeing them. And YES, the family tree is white lights only as well.
So, in short what does Christmas mean to me?
Christmas means celebrating every moment from breathing in the cold air from the fresh fallen snow, watching kids glow with every gift they open, watching A Christmas Story for the umpteenth time, and spending time with friends, family, and all the ones who impact my life in more than one way!
Now that you know why Christmas is my favorite holiday, I encourage you this season to stop and reflect on what gives you peace, love and joy at Christmas.