This has been one of the best Christmas celebrations we’ve had in ages. It is one of the few times when I’ve managed to pull it all together in time to have everything ready. I even got our newsletters out after a printing snafu!
So I was reflecting upon what made this Christmas so good for me. I think one of the main things is that we have so many wonderful friends who keep Christmas so well, as Dickens might say. We all celebrate advent, we all attend Mass on Christmas, and we all celebrate Christmas until Epiphany! So, for us, really, the party is only just now getting started!
And, I know that Christmas has become too commercial, and that for some reason that I simply do not understand, many people have begun to equate Christmas with ‘conservatives’ and they are really ticked off that it is still celebrated. (Can we just do away with all of this ‘liberal’ vs. ‘conservative’ crap? It’s getting sooooo old!) And I am painfully aware that it’s been turned into some sort of freak show with movies like ‘Elf’ and other painful-to-watch modern mockeries.
I realize that lots of Christians get offended by the “Happy Holidays” greeting as opposed to actually saying “Merry Christmas”. When I was growing up, that was merely a catchall phrase for Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s all rolled into one, and it wasn’t offensive to anybody. Personally, I am not offended by using the term “Holiday” in lieu of “Christmas”, but by people who get all bent out of shape because I wish them a Merry Christmas! After all, it takes a special kind of rebellious to be angry at someone who just wished you peace and goodwill!!!
I don’t mind Santa Claus, or Christmas trees, or elves or any of that secular stuff. I love buying gifts for my family, I love baking cookies and making fudge (although I’ve had enough, now, thank you!!) or sending out newsletters or Christmas cards. I have very warm, fuzzy, happy childhood memories of all of those things, and they all sort of combine to make Christmas warm and fuzzy for me. It’s all an amalgam of Christmas shopping and cooking, the annual Christmas play at St. Helena’s, (in which Michele Necaise always got to be the Little Blue Angel, and I was always insanely jealous of her for that), of singing Jingle Bell Rock at the Marian Hall, of Granny and Grandad, of me and my mother lighting the advent candles on our little advent wreath that always sat on top of our big console television set and Midnight Mass. Always Midnight Mass!
I guess probably the main reason why Christmas was so good for me this year was because I decided to just accept my life the way it is, and celebrate. Yes, of COURSE we miss Kendall! His absence was the one and only thing that kept this Christmas from being perfect for me, actually. But I chose not to let that ruin it for me. Instead, I packed up a box big enough for Kendall to fit into and filled it with all sorts of goodies for him and Alicia, and mailed it to him. Best I can tell, they loved it! And, apparently the only thing missing was the pierogi, which Kendall assures me I can go ahead and ship to him. 😉
The only ‘downside’ of the day is that after a freakish amount of attempts, Gaylon was unable to get a single member of his family to answer his calls, and not one of them bothered to call or text him, either. However, this was overshadowed by us attending a party at the home of some friends to celebrate the birth of our Lord.
We were blessed to be invited to the Saucedos for their 1st Day of Christmas Party, and it was wonderful! Honestly, I don’t think there is much that a rosary, homemade tamales, guacamole, rice, desserts, a birthday cake for Jesus and a pinata won’t fix! It was so fun and such a great way to celebrate. I can’t wait til next year!
Merry Christmas, Everyone!