I've written several times about the traditions we have and how I've come to realize how important they are to me. Christmas Eve is a biggie... We have a pretty "set in stone" schedule that we adhere to and today is no exception. I have to be honest and state here that I've been dreading the holidays this year only because of our employment changes and the economic stresses that we are currently undergoing. We set ourselves up for failure when we overemphasize the importance of the material part of the holiday. It's really not what matters.
We talk about making it to mass early enough to get a seat... Hurrying home to be the first ones to arrive at John and Doralice's for dinner... Eating too many appetizers and not having enough room for the real meal... Sitting around watching the annual slide show... Making fun of Anne and her presents.... Arguing over the pose for the annual Christmas photo... These are the moments that we depend on... the moments that make Christmas a special family gathering. These are the things we'll remember.
We had a great time. It's difficult to feel sorry for yourself when you look around and truly take stock. Everyone we love was there just as they have been the years before. The dinner table was overflowing with delicious food and there was more than enough for everyone to eat their fill (and most of us overate.) Everyone at the table is in good health and not facing a life threatening illness. Every adult who needs to be employed, has a job. Everyone has a roof over their head and a bed to sleep in. There was a gift for everyone in attendance. The children were appreciative and the love was sincere. What more could we ask for?