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Monday, December 22, 2014

Christmas traditions

When I was  a stay at home dad and home educator, Christmas was a 2  week break in the action.  My wife would be off her job  and we would have plenty of time to spend as a family for the holidays.   Now that I am working full time, and my wife has taken over the schooling portion of our lives everyone else in our family still gets a two week break ,except me.   I get Sunday's and Monday's off per usual but still have to work my regular Tuesday through Saturday with the exception of Christmas and New years day off. Sure we get to leave 90 minutes early on Christmas and New Year's Eve ,  but must make those 90 minutes up in the week we take them off, which is not exactly like getting them off.  I don,t say this to complain, I am very thankful to have a job.  I just say it as a point of contrast to what I am used to.

Getting so little time off, means there are some traditions at Christmas that I don't get to participate in and others that I do.  This past Saturday, Amy went with the kids to her sister.s house for the second annual family baking day.  While I worked and later while I OD'd on Netflix at home, they worked hard making multiple Christmas treats for later consumption.

After a regular day at Church yesterday,  and then helping out at  a local soup kitchen we did one of my favorite Christmas traditions, watching Its A Wonderful Life as a family.  Usually we watch it on a videocassette that predates my marriage by 10 years.  I have been married almost seventeen years ,so the videocassette is more than a quarter century old and not exactly a pleasure to watch.  Earlier this year I bought a DVD copy of my all time favorite film, and it made quite the difference in the quality of the product.

Today, we are spending the entire day out and about and doing some holiday related events. Last year we volunteered  several times at the Northern Illinois. Food Bank, Last Christmas, we invited some relatives to volunteer with us.  I was unable to go because of work.  This year we scheduled it on the Monday b4 Christmas so I could attend as well.  With another group of volunteers we assembled food to fill fill 20000 backpacks for a school backpack program which provides about 12000 meals.  Jesus gave so much to us by coming as a baby and then dying for our sins.  Giving love through volunteering and meeting the needs of others is a great way to celebrate Jesus.  After the Food Bank and after eating at one of Bunny Girls favorite restaurants, we went to one of our favorite libraries which is where I am typing this post. About twice each year we embark on what we call Library week.  Because of my work schedule, I am not always able to attend anymore.  A few hours doing what Rollers do best Librarizing , is fun and festive no matter the season.  In a few hours we are off to start what may become a tradition or just a warm holiday memory.  Amy's older brother has invited his relatives with children to a indoor fun center (roller rink, bowling alley, laser tag, bumper cars, and arcade.)  We took my side of the family there last summer for Cousins Day when in addition to the things I mentioned, there was also outdoor activities such as mini golf, bumper boats and batting cages.  It was a blast then, and should be more than 64000 ounces of fun which would make it tons of fun.

 Traditions and memories are important at Christmas time.  I hope your holiday traditions, new and old, help you experience family, fellowship and the true meaning of Christmas 

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