christmas 2013

Christmas! It is really, truly the most wonderful time of year. If I thought I knew this to be true in the past, I really experienced it in a whole new way this year. Some one might chalk it up to the fact that it is our first Christmas as a family with little John. However, it is MUCH more than that. After a interesting, eventful, adventurous year that really began in 2011 with John selling his business in Durango, our cross country trip to Florida, our time in Florida, finding out we were unexpectedly expecting, and our cross country trip to move back to Colorado when I was 37 weeks pregnant. If that weren't enough add in the arrival of our son, my husband starting back to school in September, and me taking on more design work than ever before while caring for said son. Phew!

So, this Christmas was extra special because of where we have been and what we have been through. It will go on record as one of my favorite. And perhaps even more telling, my husband informed me that it is the very best Christmas he has ever had.

Growing up, Christmas was always a special time in my family and we had several little traditions that I always looked forward to; starting with the taking of our holiday card photo in which my mom, dad, sister, and I would wear matching snow/ski hats. As an adult, John and I have always enjoyed Christmas together, but we had yet to create or implement any traditions of own. Actually, many of the traditions from my childhood had fallen by the wayside over the years, as well.

This Christmas was magical because we created some traditions within our little family, as well as some with my family. And, we re-started those from my childhood.

For me and my Johns, our first tradition looks like a breakfast out together on Christmas Eve morning. We went to ModMarket and enjoyed a delicious, healthy breakfast. Little John was in the happiest of moods (well, he usually is) and ate right along with us, enjoying small bits of eggs and potatoes. And so it happened, our first little Christmas tradition.

The magic and traditions continued on Christmas Day. Early in the morning after little John had his morning 15 ounces (where the hell does he put 15 ounces?!), we went over to my mom and dad's house, where everyone had matching jammies (this is one of those traditions we are starting). So, my mom, sister, and I had matching jammies, little John and Asher had matching jammies, and my dad, husband, and brother-in-law had matching pajama pants.

After the boys opened their gifts from Santa, we had breakfast, which was a egg dish (eggs fried with green onions, bacon, and sliced water chestnuts) my mom has made for Christmas Day morning since I was little (another tradition!). It is a recipe my paternal grandma started, and one which my mom made every Christmas of my childhood. However, we hadn't had that egg dish in over a decade. Now we will do it every year - tradition reborn!

Then we all "opened" our stockings. As I mentioned, we have had the tradition for some time where we don't really do exchanging of gifts in my family, but we do stockings. This means that we each get a a few little stocking stuffers for each person; something as simple as good chocolate bar to a pair of running gloves (both made an appearance this year).

My husband and I were lucky enough to get in a longer run together mid-day. With his hectic schedule lately, it had been quite a while since we had run together for more than a quick three with the stroller. So, we took the opportunity to go out and run for an hour. We took a route we had never taken before; I knew about where we were and we just had to kind of find our way back to my parents' home (could this run be another tradition?).

Late in the afternoon, but before dinner, we headed to a park to do a little swinging. We also went down a slide - a first for little John.

Little John looked a little something like a Christmas burglar elf with his Christmas jammies and black hat + gloves. It was chilly with the sun going down, but we did a little swinging (second swing session for little John). It was just lovely to be outside with my whole little family; as Mocha girl came along to the park too. It was here we got what could be an official Christmas 2013 family photo, and what is also in fact the first photo of ALL of us at once - John, me, John, and Mocha. It is certainly a favorite.

And that was my Christmas. It was simple, it was wonderful. I got lots of time with those I love the most. And, although little John got lots of toys from Santa, we were in no way overloaded with gifts or unneeded/unwanted crap. In this way, our Christmas wasn't focused on the gifts, products, toys, materials, etc. It was, instead, truly focused on what is really important - family and the traditions that are a part of the fabric of our family's story.

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