How can you explain something you find hard to put into words?
When I signed up to join this blog hop and chose the topic “Holidays Our Way”, I had to sit down and really reflect about what made our holidays different or special. We’ve celebrated Christmas since I was a child but as I grew up, the holidays lost it’s glitter, it lost it’s magic.
I then had children of my own and we continued on the same traditions that were the ‘status quo’ when we were kids. You do “Santa”, you shop and wrap, you cook and bake, you do the family get-togethers and then at the end of it all – you are totally exhausted and glad you have a whole year until you have to do it again. Yup, I’m OFFICIALLY the biggest GRINCH you’ve ever met!
Although Christmas is for children, I started to think about what it is about Christmas, if anything, that makes ME happy. Sure, I do a good job of putting on a holly jolly face for the kids so that their holidays are as special as I remember them being as a kid but the majority of the time, behind my smile is a sad heart.
I’m an adult now, the presents, paper and twinkling lights don’t do it for me anymore. I want more, I NEED more!
Sure, we have yearly traditions, where the little ones get to open 1 gift on Christmas Eve which is usually a pair of PJ’s. Santa comes after everyone has gone to sleep, piling mountains of brightly papered boxes and bags around the tree and then the kids are able to open their presents on Christmas morning. We have a large holiday feast of turkey, ham and all the fixins on Christmas Day eve and then do it all again on Boxing Day with our extended family.
We spend money we don’t have on things the kids don’t need. We stuff ourselves to the point of gluttony and put on weight that we really don’t want to have to try and loose in the New Year and there always ends up being some kind of family drama about something. Then the mass clean up begins…..
I was brought up Catholic but once in high school, I started to question my beliefs. I slowly moved away from the church but still considered myself a Christian. I tried my best to instill in my older children a good set of morals and values, treat others as you want to be treated, be accountable and take responsibility, be tolerant of differences, have humility and serve mankind – to name a few. The problem being, I didn’t practice what I preached.
The answer I came up with as to what makes me happy at Christmas is the happiness and smiles that I see on my children’s faces. The awe, the innocence – the fact that they are able to experience what so many children aren’t able to. What will bring me happiness is to be able to bring happiness and see my children bring happiness to people who are less fortunate.
To give a gift to a child whose family doesn’t have the money to have Santa visit this Christmas. To provide a family with a food hamper for their Christmas dinner, rather than them having to go to the food bank. Serving Christmas dinner at a local shelter. To go and sit and read a book with a Senior who is alone over the holidays. I want to teach my children what the REAL meaning of Christmas is.
Starting this Christmas, I am going to start a new Christmas tradition. I am going to pick one way of helping the less fortunate in my community and going forward, each Christmas I am going to add a new way of helping out in our community during December until we reach 12, signifying the 12 days of Christmas. I will invite my older children and other family members to follow my lead and when my toddlers are old enough to take part, I will have them involved every step of the way.
The REAL meaning of Christmas is GIVING, not receiving. That is what makes me happy, making other people happy.
From our family to yours – Happy Holidays & Merry Christmas! Bah Humbug! 😉
P.S. – This post, as mentioned above, is part of a Holiday Blog Hop and I would encourage you to visit each of these amazing blogs to read their terrific posts as well.
Sara Lafountain http://cookwith5kids.com
Erin Cox http://www.lifeabundantlyblog.com
Katie Mullis Crenshaw http://twelveandsix.com
Clarissa Laskey http://www.clarissaexplainsitall.net
Marcia Denise http://www.ciasays.com
Gillian Nicholl http://www.indulgingmum.com
Lauren Shoffner http://crunchandchill.com
Elizabeth Edgar http://mommygonetropical.com
Elanor Brammer http://tiggypoesandflutterbys.blogspot.co.uk
Jennifer Crowther http://www.jennyscrayoncollection.blogspot.co.uk
Kate Walton http://www.akreativewhim.com%2F&h=lAQFx3Niz
Marilyn Arriaga http://www.tiltamom.com
Cindylynn Calzone http://hometownqueenbee.blogspot.co.uk/…/what-will-our-chil…
Courtnee Garr Frimming http://www.ohmyheartblog.com
Kam Kay http://www.thewomentalk.com
Kelley Farrell Ferreira http://www.chicagonow.com/canny-nanny
Samantha Lamb http://mommawantsjava.com
Chanel Cumberbatch http://www.crunchychronicles.com
Rachel Newcombe http://smartmomsmartideas.com
Karen Marie Patten https://www.facebook.com/spoilmyfamily/?pnref=lhc
Brittany Lass Schwan http://www.beckyandbrittany.com
Rebecca West http://www.craftcreatecalm.com
Esther Steinfield Freedman http://blog.cuteheads.com
Liz Jean http://www.cheekydays.com
Julie McCorkle http://julesandco.net
Shannon Hughes Gauger http://dailymomtivity.com
Kristen Marie http://gentleparentingwny.com
Janella Panchamsingh http://www.mabellevie.ca
Kim Robertson http://1200milesaway.com
Lynzy Carey Coughlin http://www.sparklingfootsteps.com
Jannel Alisha http://thevanessachronicles.com
Jennifer Vleira McCullar http://lifewith3boys1girl.com