Happy "Merry Month of December" everyone! I am inspired by my little love bug to write this post. Two days ago, we have started doing our "Jesse Tree", one of the traditions I would like our family to do every Christmas season. Last year, we did the Advent Calendar while we were in the US. I'll try my very best to share it with you before this month ends.
On the evening of December 1st, we started our Advent study of The Jesse Tree (special thanks to Erica Arndt of Confessions of a Homeschooler for the free printable). She was really excited about the idea and I saw the glitter in her eyes as we were doing it. Then on the morning of the December 2nd, she asked me this thought-provoking question, "Mommy, why can't it be Christmas everyday?" To be honest, I didn't know what to say because I wasn't expecting her to ask that question. I paused for a while then tried to come up with a convincing and gratifying answer. I smiled at her and said, "It's because Christmas is the birthday of Jesus and it's just for one day, just like your birthday." (I know it's not satisfying at all). Curiosity got the better of me so I asked her, "Why do you want it to be Christmas everyday?" Her reasons may be trivial or insignificant (for some of us) but it made me ponder what she said.
"Because Daddy is here and doesn't have to go to work...
In the eyes of my child, being together as a family is sacred and precious. I remember when she just turned two and I tried to teach her "big A and small a", I used "mommy A and baby a". She looked at me and asked, "Where is Daddy A, Mommy?" At that young age, she believes that daddy, mommy and baby always go together and I couldn't be happier. :)
Since birth until she was three years old, we stayed in an apartment that was just a stone's throw away from my husband's work place. She was used to seeing her dad come home for lunch and after office hours (except on days when he was on business trips). That changed after we came back from the US. We have to stay in my mother's house in the province while my husband works in the city on weekdays. He only comes home every weekend. So everyday she misses her dad. Knowing that Christmas would mean "Daddy is home" made her want to be Christmas everyday.
As adults, how often do we look forward to being together with our loved ones? Hurriedness and/or busyness of life, more often than not, makes us take for granted the presence of our loved ones. We are there and yet not really there. Connected but disconnected. I remember a Christmas advertisement wherein the father longed for his children and he invited them to come home for Christmas. All his children (now successful adults) said they couldn't come so on Christmas eve he ate his dinner alone. Then his children got a sad news that their father died. All of them were in a hurry to go home then found out their dad was still alive, prepared a sumptuous dinner for all of them. He just wanted to be with them so he thought of a way to make them come home. I hope that our loved ones will not have to resort to doing something like it just to get our attention; just to feel our presence.
May we be like a child that wants Christmas to be everyday "so Daddy (or any loved one) is home."
... my cousin and Daddy Jon and Mommy Claire will be here...
My daughter is an only child (for now). In spite of it, she is a people-person. She loves babies, children and even adults that play with her. :) When we went to the US last year, we stayed in my brother's house for 6 months. My daughter got a chance to meet and live with her cousin who is also a girl and an only child (as of this time). As toddlers, they have their sweet moments together and not-so-sweet ones, but at the end of the day they love each other and consider each one as best friend. Since we came back, my daughter never missed a day to say she misses her cousin, my sister-in-law, my brothers and my parents. It went on for 5 months. Nowadays she says it once in a while, but she still misses them. When she found out that my brother and his family are coming for Christmas, she's ecstatic and couldn't wait for the day they will arrive.
Christmas has been so commercialised that many of us look at it as just a typical day that makes you spend. Other people I know would go out of town just to "hide" from their godchildren because they don't have gifts to give them. Is this really the meaning of the season?
May we have the eyes of a child that sees the excitement the Christmas season brings; that looks forward to this special day because of the message it conveys.
... and CJ (her cousin) and me can play together with my toys."
Sharing. That's what Christmas means for my little girl. She wants everyday to be Christmas so she can play with her cousin and share her toys with her. Modesty aside, I have always seen my sweet little girl sharing her stuff: food, drinks, toys and clothes. Just a while ago, she saw one of her favourite dresses. It was a little bit small for her now and she told me, "Mommy let's give this to another children, this is small for me already so she can use it." It melts my heart to hear her say this with all innocence and yet full of sincerity.
Giving and sharing. How come it is so easy for a child to do this? Why does it become hard as one grows old?
May we have the heart of a child that gives and shares without expecting something in return.
We can't make it December 25th everyday but I believe we can make everyday feels like Christmas. Happy Christmas everyone! :)