One More Week?

It happens to me every year…. Christmas sneaks right up and is suddenly a week away!

Yes, it’s a busy time of year, but it’s really my favorite.  I wouldn’t change it for the world!

So, what do I love so much about it?  Well, there’s a lot to it, really.  But I think the main thing is the feeling, the love, the sentiment of it.  Old and new traditions combining, spending time with family and friends, giving the perfect gift to the people I love… this all combined with the music, the food, the atmosphere of love and happiness.  It’s all just part of why I love Christmas.

Like many people, I grew up in a house divided by divorced parents.  I was very lucky in that my parents were extremely civil, still really cared about each other, and wanted nothing but the best for my little sister and me.  We traded off holidays, Dad didn’t live far away, just in the next town, and we lived with Mom and our Step-Dad.  So we had slightly different traditions depending on the year, but they always included a tree with presents underneath, food and lots of love.

Every year might have been a little different, but each one was magical to me.  I’ve tried to make each year magical for my own kids.  It’s more difficult to do that now that they are older, but I loved when they were little!  Setting out the cookies for Santa… seeing the filled stockings and tree full of gifts for excited little boys on Christmas morning.  I think I honestly got more out of it than they did most years!

For many years, as a church musician, I’ve also been involved with the Christmas Eve service at church.  It’s quite possibly my most favorite thing to do, and my most favorite service of the year.

I love hearing the Christmas story.  The birth of Christ.  The shepherds and wise men.  The angels singing.  It’s just so special to me and I never get sick of hearing about it.

Whether you believe or not, whether you celebrate or not, I can’t imagine spending this season any other way than happy and grateful.  But it happens.

People get crazy over shopping for the perfect deal.  Road rage accidents are happening as people rush all over town.  Families are divided and not working together like mine did to make the holidays a magical time.  This stuff makes me so sad!

I have shown you a picture of my very own Christmas tree this year.  It’s usually a very similar version of this, I’m allergic to trees, so it’s artificial but I think it’s beautiful.  Each ornament is something special.  Most were gifts to someone in my family.  I proudly place them on my tree and recall memories of Christmases past.  We sure have had some special times!

But, as I said, it suddenly creeps up and is only a week away!  I still have shopping to do, wrapping, cooking…. well, maybe not much cooking!

Looking at the calendar it can be overwhelming, but I choose not to let that happen.  I’ll head to the mall later today and pick up a few more things.  I’ll likely still have a few things to get this weekend.  I’ll start wrapping over the weekend.  There’s not a lot to do there anyway.  I have a small family, just a present or two for each person.  But I love to make them look pretty.  I hope to have all the presents purchased and wrapped and under my tree by Sunday evening.  That way next week I can just focus on the reason for the season…. Christmas.  The birth of my Lord.

Yes, I’m a Christian.  It’s a special time for me, and I plan to spend as much of it with my family as I can.  Less stress, more love.  That’s my goal!  I hope you have a wonderful holiday, no matter how you spend it!


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