The day after Thanksgiving in 2009, marked the day when no family holiday would ever be quite the same. That was the day my barely 17 year old brother packed up his truck and made the cross country trek to start life over again in South Carolina. Since that day, holidays have held a bittersweetness to them that makes me squeeze WHOEVER I'm with a little bit closer.
Christmas 2015 was unlike ANY Christmas before it. My brother (who is now 23) and sister (who happens to be 17) were missing. He still lives in SC and she was visiting over the Christmas vacation. Meanwhile, I ended up celebrating the day at The Queen's Cottage with my Mom and youngest brother. It was just the three of us because my brother was SICK, I was getting sick, and my Mom was getting over having been sick. No body wanted our germs and we didn't feel like traveling, so we stayed put.
The whole week is kind of a blur. The day we dropped my sister off (the Thursday before Christmas) it started snowing and it didn't stop until a few days after Christmas. We shoveled like our lives depended on it. We saw the Star Wars premiere. We got rearended while we were at a stop sign on Monday. Went to a party on Tuesday night with some new friends. By Wednesday, we realized that we would probably be staying put and started planning for how we would celebrate.
I can't remember if it was Christmas Eve, Eve or Christmas Eve...But my Mom and I went shopping to get a few surprises to make sure that Christmas still felt SOMEWHAT like Christmas for my 15 year old brother. We braved the crowds and made our way to Wal-Mart where we picked up some sparkling cider, a waffle iron, one small gift for him, a little tree and tree skirt, and a giant platter of shrimp cocktail.
It was Christmas and sick or not, we had plans to make the most of it!
On Christmas morning, my Mom lit the candles and opened the drapes and the celebration of our Savior's birth began.
The day was slow and lazy and special all at the same time. It was Christmas and the three of us were together with eyes glazed over, fevers running high, and the kind of quiet in your soul that comes when you're thinking deeply about LIFE.
It was a Christmas for the books. People were missing and a lot DIDN'T happen. Oddly enough, it's not one I want to forget anytime soon.
How was YOUR Christmas?
What is your favorite Christmas tradition that you take with you no matter WHERE you spend it?