Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas guilt and blessings

I tend to have high expectations of myself and how our family is going to celebrate holidays. I've read so many wonderful books about celebrating the liturgical year and bringing the faith alive to your kids and I want to try it all. I would love to be able to do more of these things, but life and grocery shopping too often cut into my time. I was thinking about some of the things I wanted to do this Advent but didn't do for various reasons. For example:

The Jesse tree and ornaments stayed in the box. The nativity scene didn't even make an appearance until December 24th!

The Christmas cards are still in their boxes and the first draft of the Christmas letter is still on the computer, unsent.

I didn't make homemade gifts for all the kids' teachers, neighbors, friends and relations. I hardly made any homemade gifts at all!

I didn't get together with my friend who plays the viola, as we had planned to have a string trio or quartet for Christmastime.

I didn't even wrap some of my Christmas gifts until the afternoon of Christmas Day!

We haven't gotten all the kids together yet for the traditional Christmas photo op. Hoping to do so on Sunday.

Haven't planned the annual Christmas week/New Year's open house and it don't look like it will happen this year unless I get some lightning bolt of inspiration from heaven above.

On the other hand, there were some very good things that happened this Advent, among them:

We were able to get to daily Mass quite frequently this Advent, and everyone was able to get to confession before Christmas.

We were able to reign in the Christmas gift-buying this year and tone down expectations for Santa's generosity. This alone accounted for far less stress and more enjoyment of the holiday.

We were able to buy a beautiful tree for far less than we had spent in previous years. It looks lovely and smells marvelous.

We were able to eat dinner together most nights and say our Advent prayers together, which was also a huge thing for us as most nights we are going different directions with so many evening activities.

We are all together, safe, healthy and happy and for this we are truly thankful!


Kalynne Pudner said...

Merry Christmas to all of y'all from all of us all! Wish you were closer; you could have come to our St. John's Day (Third Night) open house -- a continuation of the tradition started back in F'burg -- instead of feeling guilty about your own. And compared to everyone going to confession during Advent...nothing St. Nick could bring comes even close! I envy you! Hugs all around!

ipm said...

oh, there will always be some bit of guilt, yet, we too downsized, and no one seems worse for wear...

the important things were accomplished. :))) Happy Christmas to you all!

ipm said...

love that new picture... what a beautiful family!!!

happy 2009... :)))