I will freely admit that I am not a Christmas purist. My tree is decorated in Mardi Gras masks, I have a wreath with teal and purple peacocks, and I have stockings for my pets (that’s a whole different story). However, I am a firm believer in the magic of Christmas traditions.
A Little Christmas Eve Something
My brother and I were snoops when it came to Christmas gifts. We had no problem shaking packages or attempting to lift wrapping from the corners of gifts to sneak a peek. In fact, our snooping was so bad one year that our mother put my name on my brother’s gifts…and his on mine. Any snooping resulted in immediate disappointment.
However, our parents allowed us to open one gift from under the tree on Christmas Eve after dinner. That was genuinely our favorite part…the anticipation of waiting all day to see what chose. Whether that treat was out of sheer exhaustion from our exuberance or to allow us a taste of what was to come, I’ll never know.
The Unplugged Christmas Tree
Each year before going off to bed, our dad would have us unplug the Christmas tree. He said that Santa’s magic would light it up when he got to our house. Whenever we would wake up, we would walk into the center living room to discover that Santa had indeed arrived…and that the tree was magically lit, without being plugged into the wall. As children, we were astounded and confounded. Only later in life did I realize that a certain elf nestled a battery pack inside of the tree to pull off the illusion.
More To Unwrap
Stockings have always been my favorite part of the Christmas morning experience. Unwrapping gifts, with the anticipation of what’s inside, what’s so amazing about watching children in their wonder. Another little elf tirelessly took the time to individually wrap all of our stocking gifts, from toothbrushes to Chapstick. It simply made the moment even more magical to have another little something to unwrap.
Get In My Belly
As adults, it’s a little more difficult to follow the old traditions, especially as our families grow. We each have lots of family out of town, so it’s difficult to get everyone together at the same time. However, when we are, we make a point of enjoying a big family brunch. My stepdad makes his famous French toast and my mom loads us up on buttermilk waffles. We’re fat, sassy, and carb-loaded all day long.
That One Christmas Movie
There are hundreds of Christmas movies out there. However, my absolute favorite to this day remains A Christmas Story. My family would (un)happily watch the movie on repeat all day long. Very few others quite accurately capture the childhood experience quite like this film.
I hope you and your nearest and dearest have some fun and quirky traditions, as well. If you want another little peek into my Christmas memories, be sure to read last year’s holiday blog.