Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all who read this. I hope your holidays have been as bright and blessed as our here.
I have to say that I think that this has been the best Christmas ever so far. At least as the complete family that we now are. It has been really wonderful. The beauty and the joy this year comes not from the amount of presents, but just the joy of being able to give the boys a couple things that they really like and really enjoy, as well as the happiness of being able to give my husband a couple things that really made him happy.
We took some photos the other day and as I was reviewing them online something struck me. I really liked seeing the few presents underneath. That sounds weird, and I can't think of the correct phrasing I really want to put it in to accurately convey the feeling, so I'll just have to leave it there. Before though, it was always the sight of a tree surrounded completely with presents, presents flowing out into the room that made me feel happy. It was a sight that always feeled me with the warmth of the holiday spirit. Now, it is the opposite. I've realized that excess doesn't bring happiness. When people ask me my favorite present from growing up I always answer that I don't know, because I remember so little. I was blessed enough to have so much, but nothing really stands out.
Now that we're living in a house, now that we're the four of us, I've found myself really consumed by the traditions we celebrate the holidays with. In my family there really wasn't anything special so much in the form of traditions, and now I find myself wanting to try and create some meaningful ones.
Friends of ours, whom we've been so utterly blessed and lucky enough to get to know this past year, have some neat things that they do. We've adopted some of them. One that we've had fun doing so far today is making a garland to hang in the tree outside for the birds. We didn't use a needle and we only thread it with some leftover generic fruit loops (from when we were trying to potty train Shannon) as well as some of their organic "cheerio" cereal. Shannon had fun making this, Tristan had a hard time getting it through his head that it wasn't for him to eat, and I promptly spilled half of it onto the floor as we were getting ready to finish it - but it was really a lot of fun. We've hung it up on our tree out front, and though it looks more like an Easter garland than a Christmas one, I'm sure the birds (and squirrells) will be happy!!
The same friends who gave us that idea gave the boys a gingerbread house kit that we are planning on putting together once Justin's brother comes over.
Finally, we have a Christmas that is spent having fun, playing with new gifts, and making presents for our woodland friends outside - a day of ease and enjoyment rather than a day spent running back and forth from house to house merely getting gifts and gobbling grub.
I could ramble on and on about how happy I am right now. How wonderful my life feels right now. I won't keep on though. I just wish you all the joy that I am feeling right now. I hope you all have that happiness in your heart and in your lives. Merry Christmas!