Frank and I have always loved Christmas, especially when the house was full of kids. My favorite tradition that our family has, is to go to a Christmas Eve candlelight church service and then have dinner at Waffle House and tip our server big. It’s such a special feeling, being with your family and celebrating the greatest gift ever given and the true meaning of Christmas.
Each year at Thanksgiving, we would tell our kids to give us their wish list, which would help us, and the grandparents, with our shopping. The hard part was finding places to hide the gifts so the kids couldn’t find and open them. As I suspected, and it was later confirmed, Kendel was very good at opening and rewrapping them back up. Finally one year, we got smart and put a dead bolt on the attic door and kept the key on a string, that I wore around my neck or hid in a very good place. On Christmas Eve, the girls would sleep (or not sleep) together, while Frank and I would get in the attic and bring out all of Santa’s gifts.
Frank was always a nut about gift presentation and would literally take hours arranging and rearranging the gifts so each was displayed just so, and to make sure it flowed from one gift to another and from one kid’s section to the next. I would stay up and watch for a while, and marvel at his talent, to finally, yawn, and give up and go to bed.
When I was a kid, my whole family, including aunt and uncle and cousins spent the night at my grandparent’s house and we would wake up at 4 or 5 in the morning and we would all tear into our gifts at the same time. Wrapping paper would be flying, and everyone would be hooping and yelling with excitement, as they unwrapped something that they had been asking Santa for. It was total craziness and so much fun, and I loved it. Frank, on the other hand, was used to a much more organized and slower pace. The Christmas music was turned on and we would all sit and take turns going around the room to open one gift at a time. HOLY COW – I thought I would go insane! But the most important thing, was that we were all together, healthy, and happy.
Things are a little different now. All the kids have places and lives of their own, and our house is quite now……… except for when, Pandora’s 70’s funk music channel is playing, or we are screaming and yelling when Alabama is playing ball, or when we are dancing in the kitchen. We may be getting older, but we ain’t dead yet and we are going to make the most of every single day.
Frank and I agreed that we wouldn’t do presents for each other this year, because we wanted to spend the money on the house. So after Thanksgiving, we went into high gear to finish our sunroom. I wanted to put the Christmas tree in there and have a place ready for the kids to use the little table and chairs I had for them and a place to play. At the same time, the gas department was trying to get us scheduled to install gas to the house and logs in the fireplace. I’m so happy that it all has been completed and I love the results.
So, we are ready for ole Santa, and for anyone else that wants to come for a visit. Frank and I want to say thank you to each and every one of you, for coming along with us on this journey, and we hope that you and your family have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! 2017 is going to be fabulous!!