The shopping is done….completely. The presents are wrapped…mostly. The meals are planned…sorta. And I won’t be leaving my house until Christmas Day, if I can help it. The closer we get to the big day, the more my focus shifts from practical preparations to preparations of the heart.
I want to shut out the noise the world and focus on the quieting of hearts and stilling of spirits.
The last few weeks have been a flurry of shopping, wrapping, planning, class partying, church pagent-ing and caroling. We’ve fallen behind in our Jesse Tree devotionals. And I didn’t bake cookies with my kids. Again.
We’ve consumed our weight in popcorn while watching Elf, Rudolph and Home Alone.
Our family’s tradition of celebrating Christmas on Christmas Eve feels just right again this year. We are blessed with lots of family to visit on Christmas Day, so several years ago we began opening gifts on Christmas Eve morning. We treat it just like Christmas day and it gives us a wonderfully quiet day to play with new toys, eat simple meals and just be together…our little family.
Some dear friends will join us for a Chinese take-out dinner and then for church services.
Christmas Day morning will be a simple, joyful celebration of the birth of our Savior. Birthday cake for breakfast, anyone? I’ve been inspired by my friend who doesn’t exchange gifts on Christmas morn and we’ll be incorporating a couple of her traditions. The rest of the day will be abuzz with family and visiting. But we’ll have already had our quiet and it all seems just right.
I’d love to hear about your preparations and plans.
photo: Alesa Dam