To be quite honest, I'm neither traditional or sentimental about Christmas. I'd be perfectly content if the calendar was wiped clean of the holiday. But I'm not a total Scrooge. I do love the way we spend December 25th each and every year.
We have a standing date with George's side of the family at his sister and brother in law's house. Their house is perhaps my favorite home away from home, decorated in a style I hope to emulate in time - the beautifully eclectic, layered look that comes from living and loving over many years.
I love the colors of the walls, the soft light from old lamps, the row upon row of framed photographs, the soft cushion of wool rugs under foot, dishes and stemware that belonged to grandmothers I never met, children's art hanging next to exquisite oil paintings.
The smell, the food, the company - it all brings back memories of December 25ths past. It was 11 years ago that George and I sat on the couch in the living room and shared news of our engagement. Two years later we announced we were expecting. That same night my brother in law Mark gave me a baby name book he no longer needed, and within the first few pages I found our firstborn's name and imagined the following December 25th when I would be holding a baby named Avery. A few years later we showed up at dinner with a two year old girl with curly ringlets and a nearly two month old boy with raging colic.
The ringlets have disappeared to be replaced by waves, and the colic subsided long ago. We no longer hold babies or toddlers in our arms on December 25th. Now our children find their own amusements at Uncle Mark's and Aunt Sandi's house - the rope swing in the back yard, the low hanging branch of the magnolia tree out front, or the fake cigarettes high up on a shelf in the kitchen hutch.
Nothing delights a crowd like seeing young ones puff on fake cigarettes.
Aunt Sandi and Uncle Mark, thank you. Thank you for opening your home to us every December 25th and many other dates in between. Thank you for setting a place for us at your ever growing table; the new faces that appear around your table each year are clear evidence of your warm hearts and generous hospitality. I may not celebrate Christmas, but I always enjoy celebrating December 25th with you and yours. I'll keep bringing the Yorkshire pudding as long as you continue to cook the prime rib.
I hope you all had a wonderful December 25th and I wish you a happy and safe December 31st! See you next year friends.
Posted by Molly at 12:48 PM