It's the season of delicious aromas baking in the oven.
Sadly, it's the season of plastic, commercial, over the top gifts, pillow pets, snugglies, high tech, and not to mention get-a-better-bargain when you shop at midnight.
I've always enjoyed Thanksgiving. Never did I plan to run out at the stroke of midnight to fight a snarling vicious crowd of female shoppers just to save a few dollars. Even before I became a believer- I always considered Thanksgiving a holiday to be thankful....no matter what our belief or worship....our society places the most unusual on their priority list.
Christmastime has always been my favorite season. It has given me such memories and traditions. Years past....I incorporated my families traditions into my own family. My Mothers. My memories of a young child, or teen and even well into my twenties..... Christmastime has always triggered such wonderful memories for me.
Before coming into faith, my home was filled with the joy of trimming a large perfectly shaped Blue Spruce. Baking cookies with homemade hot chocolate. Christmas music playing in the background. Family and friends joining in for the festive moment(s).
And today.... you can still find a Blue Spruce. I prefer imperfections these days. We have the nativity scene, as well as a large ornament of Santa Claus kneeling beside baby Jesus. I'm still baking cookies and making hot chocolate. Still having family and friends joining in. I'm all about the music. I found a DC radio station that plays holiday music 24/7! My teens find themselves drowning in my singing....but I don't care. These are the moments I remember and they will too.
And today....you will hear the story of Jesus. We blend the beauty of the holiday season with the birth of Christ and St. Nicholas. Funny....just like my parents did. I remember a beautiful nativity scene sitting directly under our large Blue Spruce. I remember so clearly because I would take the baby Jesus and place him into my Barbie house.
Apple Cheeks is getting both of what her parents had as children and her older siblings have become to understand.
I remember listening to my father tell the story of La Befana who arrives on the eve of Epiphany. My mother read stories of St. Nicolas of Myra. These were stories that made traditions in our home.
While trimming the tree, placing the nativity in a safe place our cat tends to take baby Jesus now we have the balance our family needs- what our family wants. What my children will carry on hopefully into their own families.
This weekend begins a weekend of movie marathons. Tonight; Polar Express.
One of my favorites. I have so many favorites I really can't place just one on the Top 100 List!
As my husband would tell you...."every movie is her favorite". I can recite lines....I know the lyrics to all songs.....I know character names, possibly their address! just kidding.
The Polar Express not only brings magic, innocence and joy to children viewing- it brings a message. Believe. I'm a 40 something old believer.
As Hero Boy has doubts. The conductor punches Hero Boys ticket; BELIEVE.
Believing is in our hearts. It's to be riding on a train all year long. Not just because it's the season.....not due to the plastic snowmen covering your neighbors yard. Clark Griswald come to mind? Seeing is believing. And sometimes believing, is in what we can not see.
I was once Hero Boy riding the train of doubt. My conductor was Pastor S. He punched my ticket....and as the conductor said to Hero Boy.....sometimes we must believe before we see.
Or as it was for me......awakened.
So for my Hero Boy or Hero Girl or even Billy friends..... may you too believe.
I'm off to prepare for tonights Polar Express magical moment.