It passed with the blink of an eye, really. I haven’t felt even remotely Christmassy this year. Perhaps it’s the mild weather, or the lack of Christmas music, or even the fact that I bought most of the presents back in November. More likely though, it’s the huge lifestyle change that happened at the end of November, so much of Advent was taken up trying to get our heads round what life looks like now. This also meant missing carol services, Christmas meals and going to church at 11.30pm on Christmas Eve. But it hasn’t just been the lack of doing Christmas ‘stuff’ that has left me out of sync, it’s what I’ve been focussing on.
Christmas is, after all, about more than presents. And after planning and buying the kids’ presents, it all felt rather materialistic. I know that Christmas is about Jesus, that this is His season more than anyone else’s, but sometimes just knowing it doesn’t feel like enough. This year though, it’s those roots of faith that have had to suffice.
Christmas has been more different this year than to any other (obviously). The day started at 7am (which isn’t as early as it could have been, I know!) and involved opening all the presents within 1 hour of waking up (we’ve been spreading them out during the day since I was pre-teenage years). Thankfully, we weren’t at our house during the day so the kids had to choose one toy to take (harsh, I know), which meant that we were spared the swapping-toys-every-five-minutes chaos. All the components were there (the food, the tree, the presents, church, the carols…), yet I still feel like it barely happened.
[That could just be because my brain still thinks it’s sometime in early summer – the house renovations took over everything so my seasons are all totally messed up. And it was double figures on Christmas Day – what’s that all about?!]
So yes, a different day. But the kids coped with it well and had fun, which is more than we could have asked for, considering they’ve only known us for a month. Now it’s onto the post-Christmas illness/where-on-earth-are-all-the-toys-going-to-go/too much chocolate times. Only one dose of calpol so far, the toy boxes have been ordered and the chocolate hidden (from me and the kids 😉 ). I’ll take that as a win.