Christmas is an excuse for my mom and I to go nuts with tree ornaments, wrapped gifts, red ribbons, and holiday drinks. Whenever someone asks what Christmas is like at my house, I liken my mother to a Christmas fairy, as she sprinkles glitter on everything she touches during the season of December. No one does Christmas better than Mom.
Holiday Traditions and Memories
Growing up, one of my favorite holiday traditions was receiving pajamas on Christmas Eve. My mother would pick out three sets of PJs and put them under the tree every holiday season. My siblings and I would grow impatient as we’d wait in anticipation for the night before Christmas. When the night finally arrived, we’d put on festive music, make popcorn balls, and drink hot cocoa before proceeding to the living room. Sparkly gift bags would sit under the well-lit tree, and squeals of delight would escape my siblings and me as we tore back the tissue paper. We would then change into our comfy, new jammies and watch our favorite classic, White Christmas. Those are some of the best childhood memories!
For me, a Christmas to remember has to include all of these things.
It’s Different Now
As the holidays approach us, I’m reminded of such special traditions: setting up the tree, driving around to look at lights, and attending our town’s annual cookie exchange. But last week as I sat drinking hot cocoa and staring at my tree, I felt a pang of loneliness knowing this Christmas would be different. This is the first holiday season that I’ll be away from home, and I’m saddened that I won’t be able to participate in our annual traditions. It simply doesn’t feel like the holidays without going to Mom’s house.
No Place Like Home
As the snow falls and my holiday spirit increases, I’m reminded of a beautiful song:
“Oh, there’s no place like home for the holidays
‘Cause no matter how far away you roam
If you want to be happy in a million ways
For the holidays you can’t beat home sweet home.”
These familiar lyrics ring true for me more this season. There really is no place like home! As the years go by, I grow more appreciative of my family’s traditions. I have so many wonderful memories tied to the holidays, but it’s the gift of family that makes the season so special despite such fun traditions and memories.
As wonderful as these family traditions are in my mind, they pale in comparison to the gift of God, given to the world in the person of Jesus Christ. When I think of that tiny baby, born in a stable so long ago, it reminds me that this holiday season should truly be a time of quiet reflection. As important as family traditions are, let us remember the real reason we celebrate during this time of the year – The gift of Jesus Christ.
Madeleine Lowe writes from Indiana.
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