This is the time of year that I feel we reflect on our past and look to the future.
I always think of Christmas memories from my childhood.
One of my favorite celebrations was spending Christmas Eve with my family at my grandparents house. This wasn’t just my brothers and sister, and parents, but all my cousins, aunts and uncles were there. I didn’t see my entire family very often, so this was a special time. I remember playing bumper pool, getting gifts from my grandparents, and taking pictures. I would spend the whole evening playing and laughing with my cousins and listening to all the funny stories my uncles would share about my brothers. They loved to bring up my brother Rick’s first time cleaning a fish, but that’s another story. My grandad would track Santa and my cousins and I would get so excited. When I look back on these memories, it seemed just like a Hallmark Christmas movie.
These big family holiday celebrations are a tradition that my boys do not have and for a while I thought that I messed up by not giving them the same traditions that I grew up enjoying. I have realized that my boys and I created our own traditions, and after reminiscing with them about our holiday traditions I know that I didn’t mess up, we just created something different. It may not be a Hallmark Christmas movie, but our Christmas traditions are special.
Our Christmas tradition of taking a vacation, more specifically, a cruise started because after celebrating our first Easter without my husband, I knew I could not make it through Christmas without having a breakdown. I decided it was the perfect time to get away and celebrate Christmas in our own way. It was probably the best decision I’ve ever made. We love going on cruises and our first cruise was with my husband, so now when we spend this time together with just the four of us at Christmas, they are still reminded of how much their father celebrated the holidays and life. He loved to travel and my boys are definitely just like their dad.
I know our tradition is anything but traditional, but it is what we love to do. My boys look forward to getting away and spending time with each other. They talk about how they love when we sit in areas of the ship playing cards together. They love being surprised by what adventure we take when we port and they love seeing different places and cultures. THis year we are taking a short cruise to Mexico and we will spend Christmas Eve on the beach. And the best part, I don’t have to cook, clean, or do dishes; that’s a tradition I can really enjoy! They love the beach and the sun and just laughing together. I am blessed that I can give them these beautiful memories, because I truly cherish the ones I had as a child and I know they will look back on these moments and smile.
Hope you are enjoying the holidays and creating memories and traditions that will last a lifetime. Have a merry Christmas and enjoy the rest of 2022!