Normally, by this time…December 21st, aka winter solstice, the feeling of winter and of Christmas is overwhelming. The excitement is starting to boil up, and the hustle about is fulfilling yet like a hum of a train engine! This time of the year is usually very exciting, christmas carols and songs on the radio, christmas lights up and about in the neighborhood, our home completely decorated. This year, its the 21st of December, its finally winter…Christmas is 4 days away and it’s like I wouldn’t be phased if I slept through Christmas. I can pin down what it is exactly but the fulfilling excitement just isn’t there. We have finished our shopping, I’m finishing up a few gift projects, all other presents are wrapped but I don’t have that “spirit” of Christmas flowing through me. The radio isn’t playing an abundance of Christmas songs, my neighbors don’t have their lights up, our home is furnished with a lighted Christmas Tree with simple candy canes hanging from the branches, and that is it. I’m not sure if I’m worn out on Christmas already because everyone has been talking about Christmas since October. I mean for goodness sake, a very dear friend – bless her heart, although I love her so, has been playing the darn christmas music, has had half of her lights up and decorations since right after Halloween! I do love her, she is such a wonderful friend and woman, but 2 months of Christmas is a bit much. Stores have had decorations and Christmas promotions since before Halloween, due to our lovely economy too, so it isn’t just my dear friend, but I do believe the over promotion of Christmas this year is part of why I do feel this way, but I’m not sure its the case entirely.
I have always lived in the midwest (Kansas and Colorado, both) and by now, usually the snow is white on the ground and has been for quite a while now. The weather is bitter cold, and that blankets of snow and the icesicles, really make the christmas lights glisen. The cold weather makes you want to come inside to cuddle with your blanket, hot tea, your dogs and your hubby…well it does for me anyways. This year, this has not happened yet. We have had a few flurries here, and some rather cold days, but nothing like the typical winter. The beauty of winter, and the accompanying Christmas is why this is one of my favorite times of year, but this year it’s different. The drown isn’t white, and we aren’t with the family this holiday like we normally are, which is a huge change for us.
This year, the grass is still somewhat green with no snow, the temperatures are definitely bearable and we are spending Christmas with my dad for the first time in 5 years. I got to come back a couple years ago, although leaving a few days before Christmas, but we have never spent Christmas together as a family. My brother will be bringing along his girlfriend, which I think my dad – although isn’t big into the whole feelings thing – will have a good feeling that we are all finally together for the Holidays. We spent Thanksgiving with him, which was also a first (please note: it’s only because schedules have never worked around the holidays when we lived in Colorado for either party to travel 800 miles – my dad and I have always been close) for all of us. It’s a nice change I must admit, I was always so saddened that I would only speak to my dad via phone on Christmas and would ship him a package across the midwest. So this will be nice, however, my in-laws will have their first Christmas without us, as will my mom, sister, step-dad and maternal grandparents – away from us. We will be getting to skype with the in-laws (mom, dad and sister) on Christmas morning to do gifts which will be fun! Confession: I have never skyped in my life, so I’ve got to admit – although it’s pretty uneventful, I am excited about this! It will be so nice to have their company, even via the internet for Christmas morning! My mom, sister and step dad will be coming in for New Years, so we will get to do Christmas with them too.
Christmas Eve Eve, we will be starting a new tradition with our dear friends, Katy and Daniel -exchanging Christmas gifts, making great food and playing games. We have never had a tradition like this, so it will be a new one for us, which is exciting! Christmas Eve, we are spending at my great grandma’s house, with family which is also a first for us. Then Christmas morning Skyping with the in-laws and Sunday evening, we are doing a slight unconventional meal of steak and potatoes with my dad and brother.
So, although Christmas this year is filled with new faces, new traditions, and a welcomed love of friends and family, the Christmas feeling or spirit, is a bit different this year. I’m not complaining, it just isn’t feeling a lot like Christmas, contrary to the popular song I did hear today,”It’s feeling a lot like Christmas.” I did hear that Christmas we are supposed to have a little bit of snow…so maybe that Christmas feeling will come in the knick-of-time for Christmas. All I know, is I have realized I could never live in a state that doesn’t have a chance of snow on Christmas! 😉