1. Trans-Siberian Orchestra
We as a family have gone to see TSO in concert every year recently…until this year. But hope springs eternal. I am trying to convince them to take a spontaneous road trip to Little Rock or Birmingham and scalp for tickets. 😉
2. X-mas playlist
Visions of a perfect Christmas holiday well-spent include the sounds of Manheim Steamroller, TSO, and Bryan Duncan’s “Christmas is Jesus” album playing softly in the background. Pristine perfection.
3. Nativity scene
Yes, a nativity scene may seem a bit cliche. I mean, it’s not like that’s what the Christmas holidays is really all about, right? 😉 But the one at our house holds a special significance. I will always cherish those memories of my mom slowly opening the cardboard box and handing us the individual hand-painted pieces wrapped in packing paper. It was almost like an early Christmas when I would open each one and see which piece I got to place in the nativity. I hope one day to carry on my mother’s tradition and paint my own nativity scene pieces to share with my children.
Yet again, my family presents the essence of weirdness on this subject. Every year, my dad buys cans of the Borden’s eggnog. He opens one at a time. And he drinks it. One 2 ounce glass at a time. And you think I’m joking. When we were younger, my sister and I would stand, wide-eyed, as dad would bring out the revered can. We, in hushed whispers, would ask for just a taste of the heavenly concoction. And graciously, our dad would fill half of that 2 ounce glass and hand it to us to savor by the Q-tip-full.
5. Christmas morning Cinnamon Rolls
Every year for as long as I can remember, our household would wake Christmas morning to the delectable scent of cinnamon rolls. My mother is an accomplished cook, but her cinnamon rolls have to be at the top of her culinary arts list. Two years ago, I was convinced to try and “stand in” for my mom and make the fabled cinnamon rolls. Let’s just say most people ended up eating cereal that morning. Last year, though, I overcame my fears of failure and of under-rolling the dough, and produced a favorable version of mom’s cinnamon rolls.
But more than the music and the eggnog and the food is the family that I am blessed to share the Christmas season with. I have been blessed beyond words with a family and an extended family that love Christ, love each other, and find joy in serving one another. So while the music is fun to listen to, it’s nothing unless listened to in good company. And while eggnog and cinnamon rolls are good eats, they lose their charm if not originating from a loving heart.
Merry Christmas, one and all. Cherish your families and make sure they know how much they are appreciated and loved.