In the Catholic liturgical calendar, yesterday was the Feast Day of the Holy Family: a beautiful feast celebrating the Holy Family and by extension all families. This feast day was even more meaningful as we are visiting my family in Colorado.
I had totally forgotten about this Feast Day in the craziness of the Feast of the Nativity. While reflecting on the Holy Family during the homily, the priest at Mass said something else that filled me with joy (and dare I say relief): the Catholic Church celebrates Christmas from the birth of Christ until the baptism. This year that means that the holidays go until January 5. During this time the churches are still decorated and Christmas music resounds during Mass.
What a gift! I still have time to enjoy the holidays!
Even though I SWORE at Thanksgiving dinner that I was going to enjoy the “Christmas Season” (that time that the stores say begins on Thanksgiving and ends on Christmas) it never works out that way. Yes, I got “it” all done–with just a couple of “I CAN’T DO THIS!” tantrums. But, once again the actual Christmas day found me drained and just grateful that it was OVER.
So with the gift of time–is there any better gift?–I’m going to enjoy this Christmas time. The tree is staying up. . .we are still giving gifts and eating Christmas cookies. . .and most importantly visiting with family.
And without feeling guilty that I missed the time to put up a Christmas post, here is my Christmas review. . .thus far.
Our Christmas Photo. Not exactly what I wanted (this seems a little cheesy) but I’ve learned to embrace (especially when it comes to family photos) the precious click that captures a specific moment in time.
Christmas Cookies. This was the most asked about Christmas tradition this year: When are we decorating the Christmas cookies? I also learned a new technique that seems like it would be time consuming but it actually worked great.
Filling squeeze bottles up with white icing to outline the cookies. Letting them dry. . .and
filling in the spaces with other squeeze bottles of colored icing. The best thing is that the kids can “ice” the cookies too.
Of course sugar sprinkles are a MUST in our family.
There was the Christmas Eve Mass that my mother-in-law miraculously attended with us. She said that she had to be there to see Marc as an altar server and Maddie in the choir. She is closing in on 91 so we are so blessed that she could be with us.
Finally, the night everyone had been waiting for. . .
. . .and Santa arrived we think around midnight. . .at least that was the time Mom and Dad went to bed.
. . .and children were heard scampering up and down the stairs at 5 am
Dad found himself assembling a firetruck with many, many, many small pieces.
We gathered at Scott’s mom’s house for Christmas dinner, gifts and the always crazy white elephant exchange. These are some of the cousins who gathered for a picture.
Aunt Cindy and cousin Amie assembled a makeshift photo booth, complete with props.
And that was Christmas. . .now, I’m ready for the rest (and the rest–as in relax and enjoy) of the holiday! Merry Christmas everyone!