Trying to feel like Christmas

The tree is up, the mantle is decorated, and I bought a pair of reindeer horns on a headband for Kipper. :) I really am trying to get in a holiday mood.

What were your holiday traditions? Everyone seems to have different ones. I can’t imagine opening all the gifts on Christmas Eve, for example.

We were always allowed to open one gift on Christmas Eve. The rest had to wait until the next morning, at 5:00 am or whenever we could pry our parents out of bed (we weren’t allowed to go into the livingroom on Christmas morning without them). Christmas Eve has always been my favourite part of the holiday, actually. My father would get happily tipsy, we would eat too much of the gorgeous baking that my mother does every year, and we would watch the old family videos. Wonderful.

We weren’t rich, and Christmas morning usually saw us opening one large gift and a number of smaller ones (a lot of things that we needed: socks and underwear, things for school). We take turns opening, so we can ooh and ahh over everyone else’s gifts. My mother always makes homemade cinnamon rolls for the morning, and the smell fills the house. Perfect.

We were Catholic when I was small, then my parents drifted from the church and later my mother became a born-again Christian. Christmas Catholics, we were, mainly going to church on Christmas and Easter.

I miss my sisters, and my parents. I miss the dogs looking on with hopeful, shining eyes as we eat turkey. I miss everyone talking as they lend a hand to preparing the meal.

I love you all so much…I have the best family in the world. :)

3 thoughts on “Trying to feel like Christmas”

  1. We always open presents on Christmas Eve, it’s our family tradition.

    This year, like most, I will spend Christmas Eve at my Auntie Barb & Uncle Butch’s house, with them, granny, brother, mother, cousins and dogs. Then brother, mother, granny & I will go down to brother & granny’s place and open our presents to each other (which we don’t do at the relatives’). Christmas morning brother will make breakfast and then we’ll drive back up to Seattle and go to morning Mass. (My brother & I are the only Catholics, everyone else is a heathen or something, lol.) I live two blocks from the Cathedral so I’ll come home and then my brother will take off to visit his father (we have different fathers) and the go to a movie with his friends. This year I’ll probably be going to the movies, too.

    it’s funny how it’s the same old thing every year and yet every year there seems to be something a little bit different.

  2. For us, a Catholic family, we were allowed open one present after Midnight Mass, and the rest in the morning.

    Midnight Mass was our main tradition, really – the carol service before hand, starting at 11pm, the cold of the church with its antiquated heating, but quickly warming up because of the sheer number of people in there. The procession of the statue of the infant to be placed in the crib at midnight exactly.

    Things have changed now; both sisters are married, one lives in London, the other has two girls still just a little too young to have up until 2am. My parents are getting older (aren’t we all?) and feel the cold more keenly, so midnight mass is no longer comfortable for them. But I shall drive from London to Shropshire on Christmas Eve, and, barring accidents, will be able to go to church so that there’s at least one of us there for midnight. Carrying the torch until Amber and Jade are old enough to start their own traditions.

    I hope you have a great Christmas.

  3. We always celebrated the eve, then I would sing in choir. The day was meant for visiting, which I loathed as a child.

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