This is my favorite time of year.
I love walking into a lobby and smelling Christmas and seeing the beautiful decorations, I love coming home to the scent of my cinnamon scented candles that are lit with Christmas music playing in the background.
I have family in town and there’s been at least 15 people at my house at any given time. Family dinners together, all of us snuggled up on couches in the theater watching bad movies, but most importantly just enjoying each other’s company.
I came home yesterday after my final day of meetings for 2011 and my sister had six children sitting around the kitchen table building a homemade ginger bread house. And by homemade, I don’t mean the $9.99 box you buy at the drug store. They cut the walls out of card board, frosted them, decorated them with cookies and gum drops, made a walkway and doors. It was the most amazing thing ever.
My son said “this is the best day ever”. Such a beautiful moment. I was sad that I missed it but so joyful and appreciative that they were able to share that with their auntie.
Then we gathered around our Everything Tree and lit the menorah candles to celebrate the first night of Hanukkah. We prayed together, talked a little bit about the importance of the holiday and tried to feel each other’s blessing in our hearts. The kids opened up one small gift and acted like it was the greatest thing in the world. There were hugs and squeals and bright eyes and it was just so sweet. I’ve been trying to teach them this year that it’s really about giving, not only receiving, and if you read my last blog, the importance of saying thank you around this time of year.
But it’s been joyful – gifts or no gifts. We’ve been enjoying each other’s company. We changed one of my daughter’s room into a slumber room with two huge mattresses on the floor – moved everything else out and put in tons of blankets and pillows. On any given night, there’s been four little kids piled up in there having the time of their lives.
Isn’t that what this time of year is all about? Late nights, sleeping in, and lots of great food.
I’m on a mission to balance it all out and stay in shape this season, even though I’m surrounded by decadence – cookies and yummy food. Looking forward to another Hanukkah party tonight. I love this time of year.
Does anyone want to know what’s in my stocking? I will publish that blog tomorrow.