Christmas Future

Again, incorrect title here. This is not actually Christmas future, it is both Christmas now and Christmas future. I just wanted three blogs to be named Christmas Past, Christmas Present and Christmas Future so I improvised a bit. I thought those titles would sound good and perhaps attract readers. HaHa. By the way, my favorite version of “A Christmas Carol” is the one starring Alastair Sim.

The children are grown and have their own plans and families in addition to their partner’s family. I never liked having to haul our children to various places during the holidays when they just wanted to stay home and play and enjoy their day. So, I want them to enjoy their Christmas even if that is at their own home. We can have the “Santa celebration” at any time. This year we will be together Christmas Eve, though!

Of course Christmas is not the same as when I was a child and never will be, mainly because I am no longer a child! That seemed sad to me and I would look back and miss those days. Now I remember those days with a smile and am ever so thankful for them. We had our babies and it became about making memories for them. That was even more fulfilling! How fun it was to make those babies days wonderful! Now, I miss those days! Since it has not been that long ago, although I smile and am happy for those memories, I still miss them and tear up from time to time. Okay, maybe I outright sob. Our children have already noticed the difference in Christmas too as a lot of our family has passed away and/or moved away and our holiday gatherings are much smaller.

I may have trouble explaining this due to lack of words coming to me, but there are certain feelings a person gets about things. For instance, a smell or a song may remind you of a person, place or event. To me, Christmas is a feeling. I have moments, that I just “feel” that it is Christmas and it feels wonderful! It is like when you step outside and the air is just right and the smells, the way the sky looks and the weather, and you think, this reminds me of camping. That is just what I am talking about. As the Christmas season is near, just walking through the house, or stepping outside, the feeling that it is about to be Christmas and is Christmas season just comes over me. Does anyone know what I mean? Did I explain it well enough? Anyway, I absolutely love that “feeling” of Christmas. Perhaps it is the anticipation, the memories, the way people act, the air, who knows. I won’t question it, I will just enjoy it!

Another difference now is the difficulty in shopping for the children. The days of the easy, fun toys are over. My children still love the toys, but mostly the video games Well, they do still love any type of Lego and my daughter would take a stuffed animal or doll anytime. I know she wanted the Pioneer Woman dollhouse that was complete with little kitchen accessories and of course a doll of Ree! It is not available here and not for shipping or I would have made sure that Santa brought that to her! She collects all of the other Pioneer woman stuff. Clothing is too complicated to shop for as they are so particular and make their own choices now. Mommy does not get to dress them how she thinks is cute. HaHa. Gift certificates are not much fun, so it becomes quite the challenge. You have to listen to little comments all year about how they may want this or that and remember to get that for them. I don’t seem to do too well with this, but my son and daughter are the best at it. They are so observant! That must not have come from me, unless I was better when I was younger.

Please do not take any of this the wrong way, even with the changes in our lives, we still LOVE the Santa celebration part of Christmas. The family gets together and we still make all of the favorite foods. We will have lasagna one day and steak and scalloped potatoes the other. (Side note: Wikipedia says: Lasagne is the noodle and Lasagna is the dish) My husband will make his famous pancakes for breakfast I am certain. I use to make something special every year and would look for a new recipe but my husband excels at pancakes and I don’t have to work so why not?! Well, he is learning to excel at gluten free pancakes now. My sister-in-law and her children always make it to Christmas Eve still. This year they will be bringing a new member, my great nephew! We play games and eat with them and my sister-in-law will be bringing some of her special treats!

We always, always watch A Christmas Carol with Alastair Sim after everyone leaves. We try to do that on Christmas Eve to keep that tradition. That brings to mind a Christmas Past. I believe it was the last Christmas that my sister was at our house before she passed away. She and I (as the rest of the siblings) watched that movie with Mom and Dad. It was probably hard for mom what with all she had to do for Santa because that show was on television at 10:30 every Christmas Eve. We did not have all of the channel choices and movie stations that we do today. It was on Channel 3 at that time and that is when you watched it. Remember the boxes you had to have to turn the antenna the direction of one of the limited channels you could get? When that broke, until you got a new one, you may have had to go manually turn it! Haha. Anyway, with the 10:30 time, that meant us children were up late and perhaps mom had to stay up even later since she did have to help Santa.

So, my sister and her family were visiting and we were all downstairs ready to watch the movie and my son ran upstairs to cook frozen pizzas for us. Our favorite brand is a Tombstone pizza. My son takes such pride in how he “doctors” it up. He uses his special blend of spices and extra cheese. He hurried and set the timer and was back in no time. We started the movie. This year, there was some sort of problem with the DVD player but we finally got it to work. It seemed we were having issues with everything that night. Haha. The timer buzzed indicating it was pizza time. The plates, napkins and drinks were already downstairs. My son dashed up the steps to get and cut the pizzas. He was back in record time. In fact, such record time, we knew he could not have the pizzas with him. What had he forgotten? Perhaps it needed a little more oven time. Well….. you should have seen his sad little face. My son, in his hurry, had cooked the pizzas the entire time on Broil! Yep, totally black pizzas. Not at all edible! We were s disappointed but none more than him. Pizza is his very favorite food! I remember when he was actually proud because he had secretly had a goal to eat an entire frozen pizza. I remember him bragging the day that he accomplished this, he was in third grade! I had no idea he had set this goal and it does not seem to be a problem for him now. Haha. As you may have gathered from reading my stories, nothing much bothers my husband. He was glad to have that pizza no matter what. It never occurred to any of us to even attempt to eat it as it was truly burned beyond recognition. He ate it anyway, though or should I say he crunched through it. Unfortunately, we did not have any more pizzas for him to cook but I am pretty sure we found something else to snack on and we enjoyed the movie as always!

I believe in the Thanksgiving blog that I mentioned the holiday gatherings being smaller due to people passing and other reasons, but it will grow again. It is a way of life. The children will have children and new members will be added. There are always wonderful new memories to make and we should strive to do just that. I realize it is hard and there is sorrow at holidays too, too may losses at times. Loneliness. Remember to keep making memories and sharing joy and happiness with the ones who are still here. Try to reflect on your memories with smiles and be happy that we were able to have them. Perhaps this will help get through it. Embrace your loved ones that are still with you. We have lost both sets of our parents, my three older siblings and others. The sadness can wash over you at moments. Sometimes you may need to just cry and that is okay. I wish I could be there to give you a hug. Sometimes it may help to share a nice memory of a person that you can smile about or laugh about. I hope that I have encouraged you or made you smile with some of our memories. Try to smile over yours and make new ones to smile and laugh over and may you all have a wonderful Christmas.

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