Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Traditions

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I'm going to stick to my Danish roots here and say that today is Christmas enough to say "Merry Christmas". Growing up, we celebrated both days of the holiday. You had dinner and exchanged gifts on December 24th. The following morning you opened what Santa put in your stocking or under the tree or both and just had a leisurely, simple breakfast (normally some kind of pastry), at lebkucken (not me cause I don't like it), and basked in the delight of the holiday. One formal celebration, on informal. I kinda miss the tradition and feel a little lost on Christmas Eve without it.

My husband's family does not celebrate this way, but there are times when we've had Christmas dinner on Christmas Eve. That really all depends on the rest of the family's schedule. The fist Christmas we spend with the my husband's family, the boy was only four, so I doubt he remembers his first three holidays. This is pretty much the only sort of celebration he knows. Sometimes it makes me sad because, as a parent, you want to share these things with your kid. You want to recreate the joy you had as kid with your kid.

The one thing I do love about my in-laws traditions? No stress. My family cannot seem to function with any measure of peace. Over the years, I came to dread certain parts of the festivities. The fights. The two days of cooking. The lack of sleep. The chaos. The who-is-not-coming-cause-they-are-mad-at-so-and-so. The you-can't-make-that-dish-that-way-so-its-easier. I can't imagine subjecting my boy to the stress that used to abound. While I miss my childhood holidays, I do not miss the beast those holidays turned into.

We do hang stockings at the grandparents house Christmas Eve... and when I say stockings, I mean the real deal. Legg's are hung on the chimney with care. It's actually a really neat and old fashioned tradition. To belay anticipation anxiety, we do let him open one gift Christmas Eve. Otherwise, he may literally explode from excitement. And I call today Christmas. 

(At this very second, the whining about opening a gift has started. Apparently, we let him open a gift at 10 am last year, so we are two hours late this year. I have no recollection of when we did last year, but an aspie never forgets. Still, I'm making him clean up his various messes before unwrapping.)

Scrap Credits

Garland Tree
Betsy Tuma Snow kissed Christmas @ two peas in a bucket
Brandy Buffington Holiday Party @ two peas in a bucket
Kelly Jo Scraps Jingle Bell Rock Collab

Kelly Jo Scraps Jingle Bell Rock Collab
Natlie Designs Merry Christmas

Betsy Tuma Snow kissed Christmas @ two peas in a bucket
Shabby Princess Holiday Sampler
Deliscious Scraps Articliscious

Kelly Jo Scraps Jingle Bell Rock Collab
Shabby Princess Holiday Magic
Natlie Designs Merry Christmas

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