The holidays mean something to everyone. For some it is family bonding, festive food and joyful parties. For others it is over-spending, excessive eating and unhealthy bingeing. For me, it is wonderful. It is forced family time that involves crafts, cookies and youthful wonder.
The boys and I decorate a gingerbread house every year. We buy colorful candy and bring it to the building site. Although they give you a bucket of candy when you buy the house, it never seems to be enough and the cost to buy their extras is outrageous. The boys and I each take a wall to decorate, competing for the most unique and beautiful side. With only one side, we all can get more creative and elaborate. (One time Lucas made a rake out of a lollipop stick for his candy garden.)
I also like to make cookies this time of year. I finally received my Aunt Ann’s gingerbread recipe which allowed for additional decorating and variety at home. A cookie swap is fun too.
The boys get a new ornament every year to add to the collection on the tree. They have made some ornaments over the years and sometimes we have bought them. We do an ornament exchange with extended family which also adds to our stash. The ornaments are special to me, as the boys have received them since birth.
I have had to compromise my desire to have a tree. The cost, the cutting down of a live tree, the fire hazard, the mess were all factors I had to combat. I realized that the ornaments were my priority, not the tree. We settled on what I call, “an ornament holder.” It looks like a “fake” cherry blossom tree that is made of flowered lights. It works perfectly, as the branches are strong wire that hold even our heaviest ornaments.
Ben and I just found a perfect addition to our holiday collection, the Tyrannosaurus Rex Menorah. It is gold, it opens its mouth to show all its sharp teeth, and it is super cool. How can you not enjoy the holidays with all of that!