Starting New Traditions

Just think, a year ago I was talking about the traditions that we share as a family, the busy shopping weekend at 2 stores, the plans for the upcoming gatherings and the ever-important Christmas day, celebrating the birth of Christ in our Pj’s. Flash forward one year and I am sitting here in Tampa Florida wondering how to make this Holiday season feel fresh and different and yet Family-focused but in a completely different home, climate and state. Have you had a big change in your life this year? Or do you crave a change? Or are you like many, just wanting to keep your traditions just that…traditions for all to share?  Either or any way, the Holiday season is here for all of us to share…and here’s what I am planning for this year.

First thing is a look back: I look back fondly on those early days when my kids would circle items in a catalog, think American Girl, or yell from the family room when they saw the toy they wanted on the TV. Now, I get a link to a website and a smiley face asking if we can add this to their list.  I remember those sweet faces anxiously waiting on the stairs until Bob and I “made sure” that there was something under the tree, and then the exhilaration and sheer joy as they came upon their gifts, no matter how big or small.  Those were the days.

Flash forward and now we are thrilled to have them home for whatever days the swim and college schedules allow. And being in a new home, without a mantel to hang stockings, has me super excited to try new things, and a little melancholy that I won’t be hosting friends this Holiday season.  But that doesn’t mean I don’t get to plan many great meals, setting a great table and finding new traditions for this new life in a new state. Here is what’s on the top of that list:

  1. Bring out all the Christmas décor that made the move.
  2. Go all out in a big way with our new smaller spaces with the decor.
  3. Plan a family gathering ensuring everyone is invited.
  4. Watch family movies on the rooftop (outside instead of inside)
  5. Invite some new neighbors over for a Holiday cocktail. Perhaps this will be the start of a new tradition.

No matter what changes you have seen in your life this year, I hope that your reason for this season brings you close to family and friends- that is pure Joy.