Somewhere along life's long road up to where we are right now, we shifted gears. Our feelings about Christmas have changed quite a bit. We've moved on from first gear, I guess, when we used to take the catalog and circle all the things that we wished for Santa to bring for Christmas. We stopped making lists of what we hoped to see under our tree on the 25th of December. It was a long and gradual change.
These days we don't anticipate the arrival of Malibu Barbie in a shiny plastic Corvette nearly as much. Instead we look forward to things like Christmas cards with pictures of friends and family (Can you believe how he/she has grown?!). We get excited about having the opportunity to visit with dear friends at holiday parties (where, incidentally there has also been a gradual change as the years have gone by - more about the food, less about the cocktails).
The gifts are still there, and they're plentiful. But they aren't necessarily in a wrapped box with a ribbon. Nothing from a catalog. Not even from a store. More often these gifts are the ones we're the most grateful for - the smile, the hug, the beautiful music at church on Christmas Day. The cards with thoughtful notes. The great food shared with wonderful people. Priceless gifts.
The shift to this particular gear is not always smooth. There are almost always bumps in the road along the way. But eventually the road gets a little smoother, the hugs last a little longer and life is really, really good. Here's hoping you have a great holiday season. Merry Christmas & Happy New Year. Now go finish your shopping & baking & wrapping and crack open a fresh box of wine.