December 11, 2014

on the second day of christmas {traditions}

So once we've kicked off the season with our Christmas music, it's time to decorate!  My mom was, and still is, all about the Christmas decorating.  I remember the very first time Bobby came to my parent's house during the holidays, back before we were married.  He looked around, his eyes got big, and he said it looked like some kind of museum.  And I was all, "I know!  Isn't it awesome?!!"

I realize now that his deer in the headlights look was not one of wonder and amazement.  It was more like a oh crap what have i gotten myself into kind of look.  Luckily for me, he still married me, and he has grown to love Christmas decorations almost as much as I do!

Now, as much as my mom gets into the Christmas decorating, she is of the mindset that it should not be done until Thanksgiving is over and gone.  We had been following this rule as well, but over the last few years, it seemed like Thanksgiving was happening later and Christmas was happening sooner, and there wasn't as much time in between the two.  I was getting so stressed out trying to get decorations up as quickly as I could so we could enjoy them for as long as possible.  It was taking the joy out of it for me, which then, of course, was taking the joy out of it for our family.

So last year, amid the stressful, decorating mess, we decided no more.  That may have been the way it was done in my family growing up, but we needed to make it work for our family now.  This year, we had all of our Christmas decorating done a full week before Thanksgiving.  We took our time putting everything out, and it wasn't stressful or rushed.  It was glorious, and we are never going back!

We all decorate the tree together.  The kids put on some Christmas pajamas, we play some Christmas music, and we get busy.  This year was so much fun because the kids are starting to remember some of the ornaments.  I think that's my favorite part of it all - the memories and emotions and stories that go along with all of it.  You're not just hanging an ornament - you're hanging a memory.  You're not just setting out the nativity scene - you're setting out a whole host of emotions and sentiment.

To me, that is what it's all about.

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