Friday, November 25, 2011

Times - They Are A Changin'

Traditionally, this is the day we drag all the Christmas decorations out of the attic and begin the mass chaos of unpacking (decorations), packing (stuff that Christmas decorating crowds out), arranging, re-arranging, etc.

Traditionally, tomorrow is the day that we trim the tree.  It's really one of my favorite days of the whole season.  All the kids stay home, at the same time.  We play Christmas music, fix hot chocolate, maybe bake snickerdoodles, we get out all the tree-trimming ornaments and divvy them up.  The kids have gotten at least one new ornament and made one ornament almost every year of their lives... They are 21, 19 and 16.  That's a lot of ornaments.  There is much laughter, much joy, much arguing over whose year it is to put the tree-topper on the tree and the appropriate way to arrange ornaments on the tree.

--- As a complete aside - here's the argument:  Do you arrange ornaments together in like themes?  (i.e., Star Wars, Barbie, Action Heroes)  This would be Luke's stance.  Or, do you arrange ornaments randomly and evenly around the tree?  This would be Erin's stance.  They will each die with their strong opinion on this subject.  The only exception is when Luke will move his storm trooper out of the Star Wars arrangement to be within shooting range of Christmas Barbie. ---

Circa 1997

Circa 2009

We have, through the years, included friends, sweethearts, and extended family in this tradition, but always kept the tradition.

But, times - they are a changin'...

Last year. 2010.

We are in a current fiasco of trying to find a day that my grown kids can both be here at the same time.  Between work, school, other-side-of-the-family visits, finals, etc., this appears to be near to impossible.  It is a tradition none of them want to give up yet, but I can see the writing on the wall.

I think this the beginning of learning to release some traditions and let my kids begin to make their own.  This is a much more difficult, soul-wrenching process than I thought it would be.  What will our new traditions be in a few years, as our kids grow, move, marry, etc.?

I'm excited to see what new traditions Brian and I can create when there are many days of just the two-of-us.  I'm excited to see what traditions our kids take with them to new grown-up lives and what new traditions they create that I never thought about.  I really am excited.


I think we've come up with a day that everyone can be home around work, finals, and such.  This year.  I plan to enjoy it to the fullest - knowing the year is coming when we won't be able to. And I will be sad.


I know the new will be good, but releasing the old is always difficult.

What have you had to learn to let go of, and found that God replaced it with something just as beautiful, if not even more so?

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