Each and every August, I fall victim to the Christmas “bug”. That sudden, crazy bunny trail that dawns on me with the passing of my birthday; Summer is almost over. It’s almost fall. Starbucks pumpkin spice latte. With eggnog. It’s almost Christmas!!! Normal or not, my pinterest wall fills with idea’s for entertaining and decorations, and I start making lists of gifts I’d like to buy. Does this ever happen to you? I even start making Christmas crafts! This little guy was made late one night in September while I ate a bedtime pizza and watched too many episodes of House on Netflix.On a serious note, I know that Christmas is about more than who we spend it with, what we are given or what we ate – but the blessings that we have been given never escape me, and this time of year I seem to take extra joy in acknowledging them. Christ came, maybe not on December 25th, but He came all the same and through faith He gave us Salvation. I accepted and have this gift, and I am amazed by the change in my life not only on Christmas day, but every day of the year! Then I look around me on Christmas morning and I see this man who loves me wholly, this child who calls me mommy and holds me with her little arms, and I thank Jesus so much for the many, amazing and beautiful gifts He has given me when I deserved none of it. There are no words.
Greg and I have been together through 8 Christmas seasons now, and I love the way that boy enables and shares my Christmas joy. Decorations go up the first weekend of November, and like a trooper he goes outside and lights up the yard. While our neighbors are still sporting pumpkins and haystack decor, our house shines down the street in all it’s Christmas splendor and sticks out like a sore thumb. I love it!
Still being (sort of) newly-weds, we are working out our personal Christmas traditions, but I think we are starting to solidify some pretty great ones. In fact, this might have been my favorite Christmas yet!
The few weeks leading up to Christmas day, we had small dinners (turkey burgers and gift exchanges) with friends, went to the Christmas play at church and I went to the ladies Christmas party, we took long drives with lattes and looked at lights on big houses, and Greg kept surprising me with early presents. A new ipad, a new 6′ table for my craft room, my favorite starbucks coffee… that man <3. He spoils me like crazy! OH!! And he found me a Vintage “Very Beary Christmas” -out of print, limited edition – calendar!! Uncut and in mint condition, my most dear to my heart gift from him so far. Another tradition that seems to have stuck the past few years is having Christmas dinner with my parents, sisters, spouses and hundreds of kids, the weekend before Christmas day. This works perfectly for all of us, and in my parents new place it isn’t even crowded! It also helps that it’s the night after our annual Sisters Sleepover, the funnest night of the year :D. This year was especially fun because we let the “cousins” have their own little girls sleepover down the hall. Those kids (8-10 years old) decided to stay up talking until 4am! When we asked them the next morning why they stayed up all night, my daughter told my sister Pauline that they wanted to stay up until 6am, but she was worried they’d be cranky. Extreme eyeroll goes here. I think those girls learned their lesson though – by 5pm that day they were extremely spaced out, tired, and Amelia said she felt like she was walking on the moon before promptly passing out for 12 hours.
On Christmas Eve, Milly and I continued the tradition of baking treats and packaging them for Gregs coworkers, then drove in so she could deliver them from office to office wearing her cute little santa hat. She also made a Christmas card for an old man on her paper route because she felt like he should know about Jesus, so we went and delivered that as well. She has such a big heart!I slow roasted a Prime Rib all afternoon (thanks to my sis Pauline for the recipe!) for our candle light Christmas eve dinner, and at 7pm we went to church for the Christmas eve service. It was a great night, and I even got to indulge my origami self by turning our napkins into Christmas tree’s ;).
Christmas morning was the winner though. Traditions have long held that we wake up, have to wait to open gifts, have to drive somewhere, work around other peoples schedules, and deal with a healthy dose of holiday drama to top it off – but this year, for the first time in 8 years, there was nothing. It was beautiful.Amelia woke us up at 6am sharp, and loaded with coffee’s and the traditional breakfast spread I prepared the night before, we headed down to the family room. I love watching my girl open her gifts, and I think I even chose some great ones for Greg this year too! We opened gifts, we ate, we played, and later in the day we drove out to Gregs parents house for Christmas dinner with them :). Even his aunt was able to join us, and after eating as much as we could hold we headed out to my favorite walking trails and worked it off. I love my father in law, I can ask him what any tree is and he knows exactly what it is. That day we discovered some yellow birch, which I had never seen before :).All in all it’s been a perfect holiday, a kind of “count your blessings” holiday. I’m looking forward to 2015 and all the adventures it will bring – including the playing my new Catan game. Settle the Nile, Build the Pyramids – Catan style?! It’s like my two favorite boardgames (Valley of the Pharoahs and Settlers of Catan) had a baby. I think I just died.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the Robinson family! <3.