What comes to mind when you think of the word Christmas? A festive time of year, family time, gifts, celebration? Or is it more dread, weariness, exhaustion, blowing the budget and worrying about the forced family fun you will have?
As a child it was truly a magical time of year, preparing for the children’s Christmas portion of the program and watching Mom spend countless hours rehearsing for the Cantata at church. I was fortunate growing up that both sets of grandparent were able to spend Christmas Eve at our house. I remember waiting with anticipation; we would eat dinner and then open our Christmas packages from under the Christmas tree. Then on Christmas morning Santa would leave something special in our Christmas stocking. As I began to have my family I had moved away so the whole month of December seemed like a celebration. We spent time with my husband’s side and would travel to Colorado when my grandparents were still living to spend time with them and my Mom, Dad, Sister and her family. Sometimes we would try and fit in a ski trip in between Christmas and New Years’. I look back and really wonder how we did it with three small children. I have encouraged my adult children to set their own traditions and have given up our Christmas Eve so they can celebrate with their in-laws and we do something on Christmas day. I am fortunate they live so close that we have all year long to celebrate immediate family time.
I hate leaving loved ones out but have realized we can’t do it all and be all to all folks all the time. So it is more about the time we do have together and engaging the moment.
This year I vowed to be more in the presence rather than worrying about buying too many presents. Taking each moment and savoring it, embracing and capturing the memories we were making. This is the first year I took the opportunity to take my girls to the “Nutcracker” ballet, everyone had such a good time and I quickly realized it is all about going, doing and seeing rather than buying and giving material things. I vowed this next year we are going to do more of that, things they might not do on their own. In fact I had each of my children and their spouses make a list of things they would like to do as a family or with their siblings. We really had some creative ideas and it is all right near home, in fact many might make a great blog post stay tuned…
What about you? Are you “Takin Time Out” to enjoy the reason for the season or are you rushing through the hustle and bustle of life trying to keep up with the Jones’s you might say? Not me not anymore, I have been there done that and I say no more. Remember in Isaiah 7:14 “Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.” This is why we celebrate the birth of our savior. I pray you will find time to relax, enjoy and give thanks for this beautiful season.
This week it is short and sweet but I am “Takin Time Out” to enjoy family and friends, candlelight vigil at church and hope you do to. May ya’ll have a very Merry Christmas until next time my dear friends…