Tuesday, December 10, 2013
The Holiday Season
I love Christmas. A lot of people do the "Bah, Humbug" thing at Christmas. I like the way everything is covered with snow. I like the crisp cold smell in the air.
I love seeing the Santas ringing bells to collect money for the less fortunate. I love the hustle and bustle as everybody shops for their loved ones.
Most of all I love the feelings of love that we have during the holidays. Christmas is a time that we all get together to show the love we feel for others. These feelings are what we feel all year long but we do not take the time to show them. Christmas makes us stop and take the time.
I am not from a religious family. My parents would send us to Sunday school when we were small. I know what the holiday is to commemorate. But few people do that any more.
I am not a religious person. I do believe in being kind and thoughtful to others as well as to myself. If there is a God and if we are called to His home after we die then I believe that good intentions and actions are what will get us there. If there is not a God then I can die satisfied that I have done the best I could to make my part of the world a little happier. Either way I win.
I am also not a shopper. I hate shopping... for clothes, for shoes, for groceries, for anything. Except at Christmas. At Christmas I love going out to find the perfect gift for each person. Something that I want them to have that they will appreciate. Something that they would probably not get for themselves.
I agonize over what to get for which person. I get excited when I find something unique. I am overjoyed when I find something fun. I am in despair when I just do not know what to get for someone. It means I do not know them well enough to be able to choose well.
Then comes the wrapping. I try to make sure they can not always tell what is in the package. I love surprises and I want to surprise the person receiving the gift. Labels that tell "to them, from me" make me feel good.
I love the way the tree looks. All the sparkly colors of the lights. All the brightly colored ornaments, I have ornaments that I purchased. Some are quite old now. I have some made by my children and grandchildren. Some are gifts from family members and friends. They are all so beautiful and when the lights are twinkling they are even more so.
A Christmas tree does not look complete until there are presents beneath it. I love when there are so many presents that they cannot fit beneath the tree and they are stacked behind, beside, and in front of the tree. Each present represents love from one person to another. The more love the better.
I love that the whole family comes together and makes the time to truly enjoy being a family. The conversations and laughter and noise are music to me. There is nothing better than that beautiful chaos.
I love sharing my treats for them to eat. I love that they want to share theirs with me. I even love the messes and spills that always happen. They show that everyone is relaxed and having fun.
I love it when it is finally time for the opening of the gifts. I love the expectant look on the person when they are handed a present just for them. I love to watch them open the package. I love to see their faces light up when they received a gift that they really wanted, whether they knew it or not.
I have to say that watching the others open gifts is my favorite part of the night. I am so happy when they open a gift from me and a smile is the first expression on their face. I would feel silly sitting there and not getting any gifts at all but the real gratification is in watching the others.
I love the winding down of the get together. People are showing off their bounty. Sometimes they are sharing and comparing with another person. It is family.
Many complain that Christmas has become too crass and commercialized. That may be true. But if that is what it takes for people to exhibit caring for one another, I am all for it. If a person really feels strongly about the capitalistic aspect, then make something from your heart. It may only be a loaf of banana bread or a batch of brownies. If you are artistic, paint something. Sew something lovely. Make a nice jewelry box. Gifts that come from the heart are the best gifts of all.
Did I mention that I love Christmas? I do, I do love Christmas. I wish these happy feelings for everyone. Feelings that are meant to be cherished and sent out to those you love.