Now that we are grown it is no less special. My siblings are married with children; this year two of them are in Washington with their other family. That means we just get to celebrate Christmas longer. My sister is just as much to watch on Christmas morning as my nieces and nephews are. She is giddy when presents are around. She shakes them, trying to guess what she is getting for Christmas. It is just fun to watch her.
We have traditions that started the first year the folks were married that we have carried on now for 41 years. (I saw we like I was there, I am not quite that old yet.) Every Christmas Eve we get together with as many of the family as are around and make waffles for dinner. We used to have a tradition where we would make donuts after decorating the tree. And for breakfast on Christmas Day we had little boxes of cereal. The one tradition I admit to not missing is on Christmas morning we used to have to wait to go upstairs to open presents until everyone was awake. (Ok I actually miss that bit because we used to all gather in the folks room as we woke up and lay on the floor or the bed until everyone was up.) What I do not miss is Dad walking up the stairs to turn on all of the Christmas lights. He then would line us up youngest to oldest at the bottom of the stairs. Only then would he say "Well, Santa did not come this year, might as well go back to bed." Got old, do not miss it. Sorry Dad.
When we were younger, after we had our family Christmas, we would go to visit Grams and the Aunts. Most of the cousins would come by throughout the day so we saw most of the family. I loved that and miss it every year. Grams passed almost 13 years ago and that tradition sadly died with her. I think it is so important to not only have, but uphold, family traditions. Sure Christmas is celebrated in Pagan ways with the tree and presents. But Christmas is a time for family. I feel a loss at Christmas when family is not around. This year, thanks to Skype, we were able to celebrate with family away from us. I still missed being together in person.
Christmas is about family. It is about celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ. It is about good company, and good will. I love Christmas. I love it all. The music; the snow; the fire in the fireplace; the stocking stuffers; tracking Santa with NORAD; the food; the lights; the sounds; the smells. But mostly I love spending time with friends and family. A very Merry Christmas to all of you who I call friend or family or both. Thank you for making my life better by being in it.