Friday, December 21, 2012

FFF-December 21, 2012

'Tis the Friday before Christmas when all through the house ... reigns chaos!

Well, not really. However, I see some more busy days ahead for me. I'm trying to focus more on the Gift that was given than on trying to make the perfect "Norman Rockwell" Christmas come true.
Holidays are really tough on the perfectionist, which is the main reason I never enjoy them.  I always fall short of my standards.

Thinking of Christmas makes me want to share 5 highlights from past Christmases:

1.  I remember the Christmas I received my bike.  That year was a particularly good financial year for my parents and I remember my brother and I receiving tons of presents.  I also remember a particular Jell-o creation she used to do at Christmas time:  it was some kind of white concoction that had different squares of jewel-colored Jell-o in it.  I can't remember what it was called but I do remember the process she went through to make it and how beautiful it was.

2.  I remember our first Christmas after we moved to Florida and how weird it felt for it to be so warm!

3.  I remember the first Christmas Jim and I spent together.  I had moved to (southern) Illinois and it actually snowed on Christmas Day!  It was awhile before I realized how special it was to have Christmas snow.  In the 37 years since, it has rarely snowed on the actual day of Christmas.

4.  I remember one Christmas when Elissa was about 3 (we kid that everything happened the year she was 3).  We were going to Florida to see the family for Christmas, so we let her open her "big" gift at home before we went.  It was a little play kitchen.  Then all the way to Florida, we heard a little voice from the back seat, "But Daddy, I have to go home and cook."

5.  I remember how Christmases when the girls were little always involved a plethora of Barbie clothes, furniture and cars.  One in particular stands out in my mind because we just couldn't get all the Barbie stuff put together before the girls woke up.  The rest of the day we kept stepping on little Barbie shoes buried in the carpet.

Bonus: While I was going down memory lane, I also remember one particular Christmas dinner at the in-laws.  Jim had missed Thanksgiving Dinner with us that year because he had been in the hospital.  As we were beginning to dig into the food piled high on Grandma's table, Grandpa reached over and patted Jim on the back and said, "I'm just thankful we got our Jim back home for Christmas dinner."   Grandpa was never mushy or shared feelings, so that was a special tender moment to recall.

Let's put all our perfectionism aside, focus on what really matters, and may you all have a wonderful Christmas season.

If you'd like to share highlights from your week, link up to Susanne's blog, Living to Tell the Story.


Heather said...

Beautiful!! I've missed reading your posts! It has never snowed on Christmas Day for me and it's rarely cold that day. BUT it is cold now and I am praying it stays that way! :) Have a Merry Christmas!

Faith said...

oh i just LOVED reading all your memories of Christmas!! well, I live in NY on the eastern side and we have only had a few white Xmas's since my oldest was born and she is 19! we almost ALWAYS have mild, green weather here near Albany NY!!

Susanne said...

What sweet Christmas memories. I remember the year I got a bike too and the year Santa actually showed up at the back door and came in on Christmas Eve and one year when it did actually snow a postcard kind of snow when we came out of church on Christmas Eve. Your story on #4 made me smile. So cute. Merry Christmas.

mare ball said...

I live in FL and Christmas IS weird without some cold! We have to kind of manufacture Christmas here...put on the music to get in the mood. But having been here 20 years now, I would not want to live up north and deal with snow/ice anymore...even though it's beautiful!