Tis the season of tradition and change!
The girls were all excited this morning, opening presents, giving me mine – playing with new toys, cd’s, gizmos and gadgets. Now, I sit here in a very quiet house as they left to visit their dad. I used to hate the few hours of silence on Christmas day, but I’ve now come to look forward to it. It’s a break in the action, a moment to breathe and just enjoy the spirit of the day. The tree is glowing, the fire is lit, coffee is fresh and the Baileys is chilled to perfection. Plus, I get my turn to play with the new toys without anyone yelling at me!
Thinking back to the Christmas’s of my past; I grew up with the traditional massive Italian Christmas Eve gathering. My mother would prep for weeks to put on a spread for the 50 some odd people that made their way through our house on the night before Christmas. Christmas day was much quieter spent either at home or at my grandmother’s house.
Those traditions ended about 18 years ago. I moved, my cousins moved, and new traditions were started. Then those traditions changed as more family moved, passed away, or dynamics changed. Change seems to be the tradition now. Everything shifts in some way or another and it is up to us to adapt, keep the joy and the spirit of season alive regardless of the circumstances. I have become amazingly good at adaptation.
This is the first year that Christmas was left up to me and I expect that this will be the new tradition. The planning, cooking, connecting with my cousin’s to make sure we all get to see each other. It amazes me that I am now the one who’s planning for my parents as well as my children. This year I relied on my girls more to help with the baking, some wrapping and shopping. Part of me felt bad doing that, like I was taking something away from their childhood, or thinking I should be able to “do it all”, but they seemed to really enjoy it. My oldest put on Christmas carols and happily sifted, stirred and baked in the kitchen. My youngest made the lists (hers first of course), counted heads for dinner and cards for mailing. I was really proud of them and what a good team we made.
Embracing the change, making new traditions, honoring the ones of the past – it all feels really good.
May you enjoy your day to the fullest, remember the Christmas’s of the past with joy and happily create new memories for you and your family! Merry Christmas!!!