Rest in the Joy

It’s been about 10 days since I last posted…Christmas has a way of keeping one busy. In my case, I’ve been busy in the very best kind of ways…spending time relaxing and laughing (and eating!) with our families. It’s been much needed, for sure.

As a child, the majority of our ‘Christmas gatherings’ were all on Christmas day. Morning with our little family unit, lunch with Dad’s side of the family, dinner with Mom’s side. Presents galore, too much food, lots of family and cousins running about. As we’ve grown up and added members to our family (first Chris, now Jessica) traditions are changing a bit…Christmas seems to be spreading out more.

This year we drove up to Chris’ parents on Christmas Eve and enjoyed a (rare) couple of days with just his parents. The dogs played like crazy (4 of them in all!) and we ate a sinful amount of food. 😉 Their family traditions consist of eating lots of junk-y food (although most of it is homemade and delicious!) and playing games together. A good time is had by all…except for the occasional pouting done by the losers of whichever game we’ve just played.

{Let’s put it this way…I didn’t do much pouting.}

We drove back home the day after Christmas, did a load of laundry, re-packed the bags, and drove in to my parents house on Friday. My first married Christmas away from home Mom started the new tradition of a fancy Christmas dinner, complete with fine china and linens, which we continue to do each year. Friday night we feasted, then had just this sweet, sweet time of exchanging/opening gifts. It was scaled back this year…Dad called it our “Wedding Bells & Diaper Pail” Christmas, but I thought it was perfect. It probably took us over an hour to open gifts; we just went one and a time and enjoyed the sentiment & story behind the gifts.

Saturday was glorious laziness, followed by family pictures {which turned out *amazing*} & wild board games, and today was our last family Christmas with my Mom’s side of the family. That’s a lot of celebrating!

I love that our families are both full of lots of love and laughter, and that we can enjoy just relaxing and having some downtime together. There was a little baby talk as we imagined what it will be like when we get to experience Christmas through the eyes of our baby {which we all agree will be a lot of fun!} and wondered if this time next year we’ll have a little one to spoil.

For me, I tried to just soak in the fun and joy of being together in this way. Just as we don’t always know when it will be our last Christmas with a loved one, we also don’t know when it will be our last Christmas “just like this,” before some new person (big or little!) joins the mix and changes the dynamic a bit.

I guess the best way to say it is that I  just don’t want to rush past the now to get to what’s coming. It’s a temptation I face. But the truth is that there’s a lot that’s good about today, right now. This is a time that Chris & I will never get back…once we become parents, we will always be parents. I want to enjoy what God has for me today.

So this Christmas, the lesson I learned {and what I enjoyed the most} was doing my darndest to be present…to observe & tuck away memories…to be thankful for the family God has given me…and to rest in the joy of those of I love.

It was a good Christmas.

Blessed am I.

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