Getting Ready for the Holidays: Ask and You Shall Learn
by Charlotte Siems
A few years ago I asked my children two questions:
1. If we could only do three things to celebrate Christmas, what would you want them to be?
2. What was your favorite part about last Christmas?
Their answers brought tears to my eyes.
The three things included having the family together, decorating the house and eating special holiday treats that we only have at Christmas. Not one word about presents.
The “favorite part about last Christmas” mentioned the same things, plus “seeing the look on someone’s face when they opened the present I gave them.”
I wasn’t surprised about the family or food, but what got me was the decorating. That year I had been grumbling in my heart (and on my face) about the annual chore of decorating. Who even cared? It was a lot of trouble. Why don’t we skip this part?
I was absolutely floored at the impact this “chore” had on my children’s memories. Decorating for Christmas equals Creating Memories Through Atmosphere.
It was humbling. To me, decorating was just another project to do. To my family, decorating was the foundation of Christmas Past, Present and Future. It set the stage for a beautiful season of family life.
Instead of seeing this truth and enjoying the creation of memories of home, I was wasting my moments on earth feeling sorry for myself and resenting the work.
As you begin preparations for this holiday season, ask your family what is important to them. You might be surprised (and changed) by their answer.
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