Christmas to Me

Today’s the 24th and another season of Christmas will soon be past.  So far, I’ve done really good this year.  In the past, Christmas’ have been hard for me as sometimes a touch of depression catches me.  It’s nothing serious…nothing I can’t trudge through but come it does.  (See this post if you missed that)

I don’t know if it’s turning 50 (and getting a “this is me- like it or lump attitude”) or finally starting to admit that the holidays don’t always make me happy has been the cure to me feeling better, but whatever it is, I’m thankful.  It’s nice to not be feeling bad when so many others are happy.

As I’m baking some cookies today (my tradition) I can’t help but go back over a conversation I had with a friend earlier this month.  She asked if we were putting up a Christmas tree….(okay, I know…many of you are gasping at the thought of a house without a Christmas tree) but for years, we haven’t put up a tree.  She thought being we were at this house and have lots more room-we might….But we’re not.  We have a nativity….

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I tried to explain it to her….it goes something like this….

I think each person who celebrates Christmas, or any holiday for that fact, has a moment or a couple moments during the holiday where something clicks.  It’s a moment when you stop and say…now it’s Christmas.  For many people, I think it’s when they purchase the tree…for some it’s when the tree is first lit..for others it’s something entirely different.

If you read from this post I wrote last year, you know I didn’t grow up with a tree.  Hubby didn’t grow up with a tree either.  He said he can remember a couple years that they did have a Christmas tree.   The schools at the time had a live tree in each classroom.  On the last day of school the teacher took the decorations off and asked if anyone wanted the tree.  Hubby drug it home via the school bus…thus his family had a tree.

There is no sentiment for either of us in relationship to a Christmas tree “giving life” to Christmas.  As Christians, neither of us have found anywhere that the bible suggests a tree is necessary…so we just don’t do it.  For me, and Hubby too, dealing with a tree and decorations is a lot time and work for something we just don’t get excited about or gives us “meaning” to Christmas.

For me that magic moment announcing Christmas in not a Christmas tree.  The moment for both Hubby and I love is at candle light church when the lights go down, the candles are lit and the congregation sings Silent Night.  That, to us, is Christmas.  It’s a moment we treasured with our families as kids and one we always did with our own family.  I love Christmas Eve candlelight church.  There’s truly not a better time to go to church.

We don’t begrudge anyone who loves a Christmas Tree…we just don’t.  We are happy that others “find Christmas” wherever it is for them and hope in turn they can understand us.

So Merry Christmas Eve.  I’m doing what I always do…a little baking and cooking so tomorrow is a little easier.  There won’t be a lot of kids home but that’s fine- we plan it that way.  We had our family Christmas with everyone last weekend.  We try to let the kids celebrate with their in-laws on Christmas Day.  I love the low key day where we play a few games of Chess or cards..nibble on treats and sometimes go to a movie.  It’s one of the few days we really do nothing.  I love that…and for us, that’s Christmas too.

10 thoughts on “Christmas to Me

  1. Myrna

    I totally get not having a Christmas tree. We have a 2′ tree set up on a table and as soon as Christmas is over it will go back in it’s box. Christmas will be when we’re here together with our family. Merry Christmas!

    Reply
  2. Angie

    We haven’t put up a big tree in last few years. I have had small ones, 4foot ones. This year I bought planter box trees for our porch then went back and bought two more to go on fireplace hearth. They are up but haven’t even plugged them in. Got my stockings hung and wreath on door and that is good for me. Merry Christmas Jo and your family

    Reply
  3. Kathleen S

    People can’t get why I don’t have my tree up. It has to been a stress-free event or it’s not worth it for me at Christmas. This year it didn’t happen and everyone is OK with it.

    I have a special candle made by my cousin (an artist) that means Christmas to me. I also receive a tin of popcorn from The Popcorn Factory each year from my aunt and that is BY FAR the most important moment that makes Christmas. I may have screamed at the top of my lungs this year when it arrived…

    Be well this Christmas.

    Reply
  4. Brenda E.

    Tonight at our Sunday school service the congregation lights candles and turns off the lights and we sing Silent Night while the kids sing Peace, Peace. You hit it on the head it does start my Christmas too. Thanks for all you do and God bless you and your family!

    Reply
  5. JanetB

    Merry Christmas, Jo. We had a wonderful candlelight service at church tonight. Low key day tomorrow with the kids and grandkids. I do love a tree, but the older I get, the harder it is to put up. When I was a kid, getting the tree out of the field was an adventure. We had prickly cedars. It was a celebration when I grew up, got a job, and could afford a white pine. But, alas, Mom’s in a care facility for her dementia and nothing can bring back those times. So, I make new — different — memories with my hubby and grandkids. Wishing you a wonderful Christmas Day.

    Reply
  6. Sandi

    We haven’t put up a tree in the last couple of years.. Our kids are out of the area and don’t come home for Christmas so I don’t see any sense in putting it up. Have a merry Christmas!

    Reply
  7. LeeAnne

    No tree here! A day to put up, a day to take down, no thanks, I will use the time to make one more gift or one more plate of food.

    Reply
  8. Janet

    After reading your link here about your childhood Christmas issues I’m really surprised you don’t put a tree up. It was really too bad your sister was able to dictate what happened at your house. Don’t your kids miss a tree? It’s almost like you are doing the same thing to your family that your parents did to you and your siblings. Based on your story, I would have thought you would have gone the opposite direction and done Christmas up right for you and your family. Hopefully your kids put a tree up. Kind of a pain to put up but the ornaments usually have special meanings and the tree is so magical and calming in the evening when all the lights are off and just the tree lights are on. I couldn’t imagine Christmas without a tree, but that’s just me. Thanks for sharing

    Reply

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