It’s been no surprise to  my family and friends in the last years that I turned in to a, well… Scrooge. I began to hate Christmas. It had become a traditional shopping list/pain in the tush.

Part of it is that my kids are older, and either really busy with school stuff or out of our home. I have no little kids in my life around me anymore, and that just makes the Christmas season so much more fun.  When I was primarily at home, homeschooling my kids, we had lots of little traditions that were just plain fun. Making Christmas ornaments, snow ice cream, hot chocolate, and gifts. Preparing and performing Christmas pageants, concerts and get-togethers took so much energy, but they were fun!

Then, as the kids grew and I started working full time outside of the home, I kind of dried up a bit on the inside. Then, a couple of years ago, I asked Abe what he wanted for Christmas and he replied, “I just want to have fun like we used to.” Bam.

I had allowed the yucky part of Christmas to take over, and it certainly was not good. So I started having fun again. Abe and I started our own tradition of hunting our neighborhood for the perfect ditch tree to use for our Christmas tree. I have so much fun with him! We argue over which tree is the perfect one, he concedes after some time of stopping, studying, denying and moving on! Most of the time, he has to traipse through deep snow  (although this year was snowless) and once the tree is chosen, he saws it down. 

This year we brought back our old tradition of having a special night of decorating. We enjoyed a nice supper of cheese & crackers while decorating the tree. Then we sat around enjoying some great company and more laughter. We wound up the evening with the traditional viewing of “A Christmas Story.”

Isn’t that just plain fun??  And a bit ugly? Well, yes.

Throughout the last weeks, we’ve made little gifts to give out to co-workers, friends and family, and I’ve enjoyed this season so much more. It hasn’t been about material things, but about relationship building events. And this is good.

We were also reminded that when we celebrate Christmas is rather relative. Really, Jesus’ birthday is not December 25, after all, and this year, my son was unable to be home for Christmas. So we celebrated a couple of days later. It was a treasured time.

Life is good.