Saturday, December 24, 2016

Hosting, Holidays, Traditions and Memories

Merry Christmas Eve everyone! This year, I've been being purposeful about slowing down and really enjoying the season. Seems there is always something to do and I'm a somewhat high-energy person and actually find it difficult to chill out. My husband is very good at telling me, "You know you don't have to do that right now. Why don't you sit down for a while?" But this year I've actually listened to him.  :)
With our new house, it's officially become the host-house for events and holidays and I LOVE it. It comes with a level of responsibility and extra thoughtfulness about things but I really believe God made my me and my husband with a desire to make a place for people. We haven't even been in this house 9 months and we've already hosted numerous birthday parties, a baby shower, a bridal shower, numerous dinner parties, a wine and s'mores party (I know, sounds fun right?), Thanksgiving and tomorrow we will host Christmas.

Now that our kids are adult-ing, I'm reflecting on all of the little Christmas traditions we've had.
  • Putting up the Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving wearing Santa Hats
  • Watching Christmas movies in excess between Thanksgiving and Christmas
  • Board games get dusted off and played more often throughout the month
  • Christmas cookie decorating
  • Good-natured arguments over which Christmas music should be played and how often
  • Opening one gift on Christmas eve
  • Christmas Eve church services
  • Christmas morning, whoever passes out the gifts has to where a Santa hat
  • Opening Stockings first
  • Big big big Christmas morning breakfast AFTER the gift opening
  • Playing board games on Christmas day after the large dinner
  • etc. etc.

The family Christmas Cookie decorating party is always fun. I don't know whether I do it for the kids or the kids do it for me. Doesn't matter. We do it. :)
With kids in college, jobs, boyfriends, girlfriends and general life stuff,  it's getting harder and harder to find a time that works for everyone but every year, we pull it off; Christmas music, cookies and a large mess. 
There is SO much laughing, mild competition and smack talk; whose cookies look better, whose were most creative, whose were the worst...simply awesome times.
This year we did it again and we also got to have a couple of other young adults join in who have never decorated a Christmas cookie in their whole life! The time together is not about getting the best-looking-Pinterest-worthy cookie. It's the time together. Period.

Here's a pic of the finished products from this year's venture:

Definitely NOT going to find these in Better Homes and Gardens

Our house got to be that place where a memory was made. A small one, but a memory.

You may think, "what's the big deal with decorating cookies?"  It's not a big deal but traditions are.  It's an anchor to your childhood and family and memories.  It gives one a sense of security and connection. I remember decorating Christmas cookies and other Christmas baking with my mom.  My hope is that one day in the future, my kids will decorate Christmas cookies with THEIR kids and remember fondly these times. 

Revive and hold on to any traditions your family has. I'd love to hear about yours! Merry Christmas everyone. Sending love to all my family and friends. xoxox

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