Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Past

Last Christmas was special. In fact that Christmas was one of the most memorable I had had in years. Maybe even ever.

It was the first time I had ever experienced the holiday season away from my family, and I was feeling a little homesick. Dallas, Texas had already been my new home for three months already, and not knowing how long I'd be there (possibly a couple years at the time), I decided to buy my first Christmas tree for my little place. So I bought a 2' foot tree, and decorated it with white lights, and gold & silver balls. I hung a little red plaque on my front door that said, "Joy", with a sleigh bell hanging from it. I bought an Evergreen scented plug-in to make my place smell "Christmas-y". I bought a dark green stocking with white snow flakes on it; a stocking was something I hadn't had in years.

My Dallas "family" made sure the Christmas holiday was special. I specifically remember the night when they lit the fireplace in the lobby, we all gathered our chairs in a circle, and drank Land O'Lakes hot chocolate (I had picked Chocolate Raspberry cocoa). Mr. B. (my Dallas "Dad") read a story from a book about the importance of celebrating Christmas and keeping traditions, and how our very acts of celebration and tradition ARE acts of recognizition and celebration for Christ's birth, whether or not He was really born during this time of year.

My Dallas "family" and I exchanged a gift among ourselves. We each had a person we bought a gift for. We all participated in stockings and stocking stuffers ... so, so fun! I hadn't done stockings since I was probably 9 years old. I stuck a Reese's tree in every one's stocking. We all got various things like fun socks, chocolate covered espresso beans, and tiny bottles of Bath & Body Works lotion in our stockings.

We celebrated the Christmas holiday; we kept it happy, festive, memorable, and yet low-stress. And all the while, we still kept our focus on the real reason for the Christmas season: a time when we celebrate and recognize Christ's coming to earth as an infant.

Christmas 2009 will always be one that is very special to me. And believe it or not, I miss that Christmas Past... and my little Christmas tree with white lights, and gold & silver balls.

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas


1 comment:

Christa said...

This picture is so beautiful, Leah! I love it!!