Christmas was a little different this year....
I guess all Christmases can't be full of cheer...I don't know. Maybe they can. This year was different for me. For our family. And as I spent lots of days in bed, some days deep in sleep only waking when my fever would spike or the chills would rack my body, other days wondering if my head was going to explode each time I'd roll over in bed....I kept hearing Savannah's voice playing over and over and over again in my head, "Mom, it's so weird. It doesn't even feel like Christmas!"
Sure we did lots of things throughout the season to "make it feel like Christmas". We hosted a big office party at our home for all of Brett's staff and their families, our elf "Murray" (you know...."Murray Christmas" everyone, ha ha) made all kinds of mischief, we had Brett's family over for dinner, we got together with some of Brett's cousins for taco night and a late night of card games (I did win them all....just in case you were wondering), we rented a big trailer, filled with hay, and decorated with Christmas lights and invited my sisters and a bunch of our friends to join us for an evening of caroling followed by roasting s'mores in our firepit and sipping on hot chocolate topped off with homemade peppermint ice cream. THAT felt like Christmas!
But as Christmas came closer and family drama made it's way into our life....suddenly there was no time to just BE with the kids. No time to snuggle under the Christmas tree and read books together because we were spending hours on the phone trying to make arrangements to take care of some family matters. No time to get the grocery shopping done ahead of time so that there would be no last minute rushing around because we were meeting with family members to discuss hard choices and the reality of consequences of years of wrong choices. No time to wrap presents because I was chasing a toddler around, changing diapers, making bottles, rocking her to sleep.
It dawned on me the other day, when Savannah said, "I wish Christmas was in January because it's colder in January. It's supposed to be cold on Christmas," that maybe THAT was what she meant when she said, "Mom, it's so weird. It doesn't even feel like Christmas!"
Because we felt the spirit of Christmas, that is for sure. We felt is as we drove around admiring the beautiful Christmas light displays, as we baked peppernuts and delivered Christmas cards and our famous peanut butter caramel popcorn to neighbors and friends, as we read from the scriptures and acted out the Nativity, as the choir sang beautiful praises on Christmas morning, and as Savannah sang with two of her dearest friends "If I Had Been in Bethlehem". For me, THAT was Christmas!
I did manage to take a few pictures. On Christmas Eve, we acted out the Nativity. Grant sure made a cute little Joseph.