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    Sunday, December 24, 2006
    T'was The Night Before Christmas
    Christmas always brings with it a feeling of youth. Memories of waiting up for Santa Claus. Swearing you could hear the reindeer on the roof. Leaving out milk and cookies. Trying your best not to taunt your siblings for fear that St. Nick would see you and put you on the "naughty" list and leave you only a lump of coal in your stocking. And that feeling of magic when you woke up Christmas morning to a pile of presents that had appeared seemingly out of nowhere. It's a holiday geared towards children and that child-like innocence.

    But as I sat tonight, on Christmas Eve, wrapping gifts for family and friends, I realized that I might just take more joy in Christmas now that I am older. Listening to "Santa Baby" (which is so clearly an adult song ... "hurry down the chimney tonight"? Come on try and tell me that's not a euphamism for something decidedly un-child-friendly ...) I smiled as I imagined everyone opening the gifts I had chosen for them. I spent way too much this year, but didn't even give a thought to the fact that I spent outside my means because I truly take joy for giving presents to my loved ones that I know will make them happy.

    It's no longer about what is the shiniest, what's the coolest toy, or comparing your gifts when you get back to school from Christmas break. Christmas as an adult is about sharing time with your loved ones. Taking a moment to remind your friends and family how much they really mean to you. Sure it's become commercialized, and sure we shouldn't need a holiday to remember to cherish what is simple and beautiful in our lives, but isn't it better that we at least do it once a year than never at all?

    Tomorrow my brother, my parents, and I will sit in the same places in our living room as we have for as long as I can remember. My brother's presents will be on the left side of the tree, and he'll open them one at a time while sitting in an arm chair that gets used basically only on this day. My presents will be in the center, and I'll sit cross-legged in the middle of the floor, surrounded by wrapping paper and ribbons. My parents gifts will be off in a corner to the right, next to the fireplace and all three of our stockings, and as they have every year, they will sit on the couch and refuse to open their presents until my brother and I are done with ours. We'll laugh at the gag gifts, and at my father's attempts to buy my mother clothing. But the difference now that my brother and I are grown is that we can show our appreciation directly to our parents. Instead of just sitting in awe and wondering how Santa knows us so well, we can smile at Mom and Dad and thank them in earnest. And in turn, our gifts to them are no longer made out of necessity. Class assignments in Crayola crayon (though let's be honest, we know our parents still miss the days of gifts made out of cardboard. Quick side-note, either last year or the year before, I forget which, my friend Meegan threw a holiday party in which we made our own plates. You know the kind, you draw a picture with special markers on round pieces of special paper and send it into the company and just a few weeks later receive a special made plastic dish with your design. On mine, I outlined my hand, elementary school style. And around it, I wrote "The print may be larger, but the hand is still your baby's. Merry Christmas. Love, Finy". Of course my mother cried, which was my intention all along). Instead our gifts have a knowledge of our loved ones behind them. A genuine thought to what would make them happy.

    Sure the magic of Christmas as a child is wonderful. It's fantastic to see a kid's face light up when they see the tree on Christmas morning. Being six years younger than I, I used to love watching my brother find his presents in the morning. But I'll still take Christmas as an adult over that any day. I appreciate it more now. And I wouldn't change that for the world.

    Merry Christmas, everyone. Thank you for spending these past twelve months with me. And know that I appreciate each and every one of you.

    Labels: ,

    posted by FINY @ Sunday, December 24, 2006  
    • At 12/25/2006, Blogger The Omnipotent Q said…

      Thanks for sharing your Christmas memories, FINY. Very lovely.

      I hope you and your family have a lovely and blessed Christmas.

    • At 12/25/2006, Blogger Miss Browneyedgirlie said…

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, FINY :)

    • At 12/25/2006, Blogger Steddy said…

      Merry Christmas beautiful, from not so snowy MN. See you soon....

    • At 12/25/2006, Blogger MattySox said…

      Merry Christmas, Finy, here's to hoping next year will be better than the last...

    • At 12/26/2006, Blogger Esther said…

      Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

    • At 12/26/2006, Blogger Ari said…

      Great story finy, i loved it, as being jewish growing up and marrying into a non-jewish family i havelearned the woneders of christmas ad look forward to having a child next year to share the holiday with.

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    Name: FINY
    Home: New York, New York, United States
    About Me: Just a New England girl trying to make it in NYC. Email me at: soxfaninnyc [at] gmail [dot] com
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