Grab a hot cup of cocoa. Let’s have a chat about Christmas. I want to talk to you – yea, YOU. The mom trying to make her house look like the cover of Better Homes & Gardens before guests come over for a Christmas party. The wife who is trying to spend as little money as possible but is struggling to find Christmas gifts for everyone she loves.
I’m talking to you – the overwhelmed “bah-humbug” in all of us. Can we please go back to the time when Christmas was enough?
When I think back to my Christmases as a child, you know what I see? I see my dad sitting on the hearth, Nat King Cole’s “Christmas Song” playing on the radio, dad singing his heart out.
I see my mom in the kitchen baking fruitcakes for everyone in the family, then still taking time to help me make cookies for Santa. (I also see the bits of extra cookie batter left in the bowl so I’d have something to lick!)
I see Christmas Eve services at church, everyone singing beautiful hymns and listening to the reading of the real Christmas story from Luke 2.
I see that Christmas when I was 7 and got a puppy, but I didn’t see the puppy at first because a brand new Cabbage Patch Kid was sitting right in front of the tree and I couldn’t think of anything else at that moment except how much fun I’d have playing with her….until I saw the puppy and my whole world became consumed by fluffy black cuteness named Lisa Pisa.
I see our dining room table overflowing with family and food, and laughing at my Granddaddy mistakenly putting potpourri from the stove on his plate. (No worries, mom caught him before he could eat it!)
The bigger picture, though, is what I don’t see.
I don’t see chaos, perfection, stress, mom pulling her hair out trying to get everything done, dad working extra hours to make more money to buy more needless gifts… It’s not there.
Fast forward to my Christmases as a mom. I see Marley & I making cookies and licking the batter. I see Marley & I going to see Christmas lights. I see giggles in front of the TV as we watch “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town” and “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation” for the 1,742nd time.
(And yes, she’s in a tank top. We live in Georgia where some Christmases are really warm.)
I see Marley dressed as an angel in her preschool Christmas program, dancing & singing…then slowly lifting her dress mid-dance to show her stuff to the whole audience. (Yea, that was my kid.)
I see Christmases when Mark was finally part of our family and Marley rode his back through Stone Mountain Park to go see the Snow Queen.
And how she couldn’t wait to decorate our Christmas tree just so Mark would hold her high to put the star (or some years, the Santa hat) on top.
I see Christmas morning church service in our PJs as our brand new baby church met at the clubhouse of our pastor’s subdivision to celebrate together before opening a single gift…and then making a complete disaster of our living room with wrapping paper scraps strewn everywhere.
Again, what’s missing is the stress, the chaos, the perfection.
All I see is love, and laughter, and sweet memories that will never go away.
Christmas is enough.
It’s enough for me. It’s enough for you.
I wanted so badly to share 12 Christmas videos with you here on the blog, but Christmas got in the way. I wanted to sit down and spend hours creating all kinds of Christmas crafts to share with you, but Christmas got in the way.
Actually, Christmas didn’t get in the way. Busy-ness of life got in the way of Christmas.
Because Christmas is enough.
So, because Christmas is enough, this will be my last post of 2015. I’ll be spending the rest of the Christmas season with my people, watching “Elf”, “Christmas Vacation”, and “White Christmas” on repeat, singing Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” way too loud, and eating my body weight in Christmas treats.
And I hope you’ll do the same. Let Christmas be enough.
God bless, and Merry Christmas! See you in 2016!
*Sidenote: I thought it was particularly appropriate to share this today because it’s my daddy’s birthday. And although he now celebrates in heaven, I still celebrate him each & every year.
And in case you missed it last year, here’s a poem I wrote: