Riding Life!

Riding Life!
Life is like a wild horse--Unless you ride it, it will ride you! (from the movie: "Princess of Thieves.")

Saturday, November 7, 2009

C: Holidays Coming--Continued...

Before I get back on the holiday theme from last post, let me share with you what I saw when I stepped out on my back porch to feed my kitty this morning about 6 a.m. It was just coming light.

As I look at these pictures, what I now see is a yard covered with leaves that need raking (YOU are charged with being non-judgmental about those, if you please.) I know these don't compare with the beautiful fall photos on other bloggs. What I was doing when I snapped these was trying to capture just a bit of the peaceful solitude I felt this morning as I went out there. I love where I live. As you can see, I am surrounded by forest (there's a tale coming next post about the woods!). Do you think that mysterious circle in the bottom one could be one of those supernatural orbs??? (How exciting!).

Enough digression; back to holidays.

Joolzmac of Simply Joolz commented on my previous holiday post, saying that in Australia they have fewer holidays and, hence, fewer times of gathering with all the family. She's right--it's like the holidays are excuses for the family to gather and command performances to see family you don't often see. I look forward to these times, and I think my family does, too. And "family" includes friends-who-are-famiy, too, like V and her brood.

Each year on Christmas Eve for the past 20 years or so, we have hosted a Christmas Eve dinner. Here's the routine: We gather at 5 ish, have dinner, sing Christmas carols, and the kids each get a "Christmas Eve Bag." They love this tradition. It is a gift bag full of little individually-wrapped cheap gifts. I have come to realize that the gift, itself, is not nearly as important as the build up for getting the bags and the joy of unwrapping 15 or so little gifts. The excitement is high. I found this picture of V's three oldest grandchildren who just opened their bags.

After that we visit until everyone disperses early evening to go prepare for their own Christmas morning traditions and some leave to attend Christmas Eve services.

Our Christmas morning is the same each year, too. We have sausage/egg casserole and apple crepes for our breakfast after we have opened presents. Christmas evening we always join our good friends "over the mountain" for dinner. Last year was the first (in 40 years!) without my husband so, as I said, I was a bit of a zombie.

This year we are looking forward to a new treat! My sister-in-law (husband's youngest sister) and her four wonderful bright-as-pennies children will be with us for a week, including Christmas! This is the first time we have ever been together with them for Christmas. It is going to add such depth and dimension to our holiday tradition, and I see it as part-and-parcel of coming out of that zombie-state I mentioned in the previous post. It is a joyous signal that good things are ahead.

My son and I have already begun stocking the larder for the bottomless pit those nephews are! (I love it! Feeding them will, in turn, feed me emotionally!) And we will continue our tradtions, only with them included and with the nuances they will bring. For example, my niece has requested a "real" tree instead of our artificial one. Wish granted!

Mother-in-law is obviously ecstatic that so much of her brood will be here, I will have all my family and friends gathered 'round! What could be better? I will keep you posted on all our preparations and let you in on our celebrations!

So, I'm feeling like my treasured traditions are merging with some new ones. It is, indeed, an awakening for me. Thank you all for your encouraging comments!! C


Protege said...

I love the top picture (and the supernatural orb; I have posted those too on my blog!) and I like the sentiment that you love where you live. That is so important.
I enjoyed also the description of your holidays traditions.
Hope you are having a great Saturday,

jan said...

Well, the orb could be supernatural, but I get 'orbs' when I photograph dark items for ebay (I got rid of almost all my suits, when we moved to the desert!) Maybe my clothes were supernatural and I didn't realize it!

I hope you have a fabulous holiday!

Anonymous said...

Well I thought we were looking at an animal. I am catching your exciting feeling and anticipation of the holidays coming up. HH and I had begun to feel the strain of two huge holidays and the family getting bigger that # 1 daughter has taken over the Thanksgiving. We are just feeling the creepies from years of doing stuff. We are surely looking forward to Christmas at our house though. #3 daughter has a Christmas Eve gathering after Mass at her home and this year it will be in her beautiful new home. As they like to say a real Christmas Tree House. Looking forward to sharing with you.

kath001 said...

I know just what you mean about feeling the peace of where you live. I absolutely love it when I open the door and just feel the greeting of peace. And I have grabbed the camera to capture the moment, only to realize that the camera never does capture it adequately.

I'm so excited to start the holiday preparations. Look forward to hearing about yours. :)

Linda Lou Rogers Averitt said...

yahooooo......sounds like a fun Holiday season...love your peaceful setting......I know you enjoy it and maybe a wind will come by and blow off the leaves:) we can always hope:)

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

What a wonderful view to see out your door - including the leafs on the ground. It does seem like our holiday traditions have to be changed more easily these days. Since I began hosting our holiday celebrations, we have had several deaths in our families and at least 6 divorces and remarriages. It is hard for me to let go of the ex spouses and welcome a new one, but it usually works out fine. I'm so glad you will have your s-i-l and her children with you for the holidays. It sounds like you are well on your way to coming out of the "zombie" world into the real world. Congratulations! laurie

joolzmac said...

Wow you are going to be busy for Christmas! It sounds like the perfect time to me so I hope you all enjoy it.

Cheers - Joolz

funnily, the word verification is :- lations ... as is re-lations

KathyB. said...

I am looking forward to reading about your upcoming holiday with your sis-in-law and her family and I know not nearly as much as your Mother-in-law.

Bye-bye zombie and hello to the spirit of Christmas Present and joy!

Anonymous said...

I think it sounds like your Christmas is going to shape up into a wonderful one! That makes me so happy for you! :)

Jody Blue said...

Children do add that special awe at Christmas time.

carla said...

The family gathering sounds wonderful. After my mother went into the nursing home, the rest of us rarely get together and I miss that.

There have been Thanksgivings when it was just my husband and myself but we always fix the meal (unless we're traveling to Oklahoma).

I think even if I were all alone, I'd still celebrate traditionally.

Vickie said...

C, I'm so excited for you to have all your family/friends around you at Christmastime! Sounds like a lovely holiday season coming up. Yep, you better stock up on food. My two boys could put away the groceries. We used to go through a gallon of milk a day for a few years there. But I agree with you - it makes my heart glad to see all that food being enjoyed and put away and those young ones having so much fun doing it! I like your idea of the Christmas Eve gift bags. We always let our kids open one gift on Christmas eve and the rest the next morning. I'm looking forward to having grandkids so I can watch them enjoy Christmas!

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