Thursday, December 10, 2009

Merry Christmas 2009!

This is truly my favorite time of the year! I look forward to preparing my heart for Christ and never tire of it. How wonderful it is to have hope, peace, and joy in my heart as I prepare not only spiritually, but also prepare our home for the most honored guest of all.

We've had our table-top nativity scene for 35 years or so and I look forward to placing each part of it on top of the roll top desk in our living room. As I'm unwrapping the cherished pieces, I think about the Christmas account in the Bible and it's new all over again. I try to think what Mary must have thought and what she experienced that wonderful night when the Savior of the world was born.

Some people have a problem with experiencing Christ and Santa at Christmas. Our children always understood the distinction and were not confused. We celebrate by giving gifts because God gave us the most precious gift of all through his Son--salvation. We always placed more emphasis on spiritual preparation more than on material gifts.

Once when our first born was 3 years old, I was removing the Christmas wreath from our home's door. She was talking with me about removing the wreath because Christmas had passed and we were moving into another part of our year. She said "even though we are taking down the wreath, Christ lives in our hearts all the time" and I told her that was exactly right. If a 3 year old can figure it out, why does the world have such a difficult time?

We typically have a tree that is around 6-7 feet tall that I look forward to decorating and enjoying throughout December. There have been a few mishaps over the years with fallen trees. This year the day I finished decorating the tree, we were awakened with a loud crash about midnight! I just about cried. As we surveyed the damage, I realized 2 prized ornaments were broken beyond repair. We had collected an ornament each year for our daughters. The purpose was to not only commemorate Christmas with them, but to give them all their ornaments when they moved out of our home. As it happened, neither of them wanted to take them. They wanted to continue to see them on our tree just the way it had always been.

I redecorated the tree in the following days after removing the lights and ornaments, but not before my husband secured the tree to the wall with fishing line! So far so good.

Last Saturday, the women in my family got together for our annual cookie bake. My 5 year old granddaughter and I decorated a gingerbread house. This was the third year we've done this project. It turned out beautifully! She was so excited the whole time we were decorating. My Mom, my sister, our 2 daughters, our granddaughter, and my youngest daughter's mother-in-law had a great time baking, tasting, laughing, encouraging, and grazing all day. Our little grandson even accommodated us by taking a 3 hour nap and he was very good the rest of the time as well.

We look forward to this activity each year. Our daughters give their cookies/candies to neighbors and friends that they want to remember during this special time of the year. My mother makes fruit cake cookies that she loves to share with family and friends who drop in throughout the season.

Each year we usually take turns hosting. It's nice to see how we each decorate for Christmas. This year we met where the grandchildren live because it was easier on their mother to be at home and she is centrally located. It worked out wonderfully for everyone.

I hope you enjoy the pictures of our decorations and traditions. Merry Christmas!

1 comment:

  1. i like the green ribbon on the candlestick pedestal. did you add that? it's the perfect touch. can't wait to see you all tomorrow. i will hardly sleep tonight.