“Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.” ― Oscar Wilde

I was thinking about the above quote while I was doing last-minute Christmas shopping on Saturday night and adding up the total. Alas. I’m just glad that we’re able to do nice things for our family and our kids, and I do like the Christmas season.

I have to say, though, that Christmas is different once you have children. I’ve never been a “living vicariously through your kids” person. I mean, they have their own lives, so what’s the point of trying to live it for them or your own life through them. I have my own dreams, and they should have theirs. However, it’s hard not to live vicariously through them at Christmas time.

After your 10th or so church performance (it’s not fun to be the 14-year-old in front of church with the 5-year-olds…it’s just not), the 15+ times you’ve seen “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” and “Charlie Brown Christmas,” or when you realize it’s your parents doing the shopping and not some mythical chubby guy in a red suit, the shine of Christmas kind of wears off for a while. For me at least, Christmas was just not that big a deal in high school, in college, and (let’s be honest) during my 20s. It was nice having the time off of work (if I had it) and the gifts were nice, but it didn’t have the same fuzzy feelings it had when I was 5. I still loved singing the Christmas carols in church and celebrating Jesus’ birth, but the rest of it really became more of a hassle than fun. Although, the Christmas when we got snowed in and had to stay in Milwaukee and spent the evening watching “Tropic Thunder” with friends is probably one of the highlights of Christmases past.

Fynn’s first Christmases haven’t been all that exciting. As a 1 or 2-year-old, he sort of didn’t get it. It was fun to play with the toys and see the grandparents, but he didn’t quite get the excitement of the season. This year it’s completely different. He totally gets it and it has been so fun! I’m totally living vicariously through him right now. We’re making cookies, decorating stockings, listening to Christmas songs, playing with the Little People Nativity scenes, and watching Christmas cartoons. It may sound cliché, but he’s making me feel like a kid again. I’m excited to bring him to church on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, open presents, play in the snow, and just spend time with the family.

It has been a long, stressful few months. It is tough getting used to a new family member in the house – especially one who has the flair for the dramatic (even if she’s the cutest little drama queen ever). It will be nice to put the heavy topics and health questions aside and celebrate together. Besides, it’s important for our family to remember what’s really important about the season – “Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.” You know the rest.

I hope everyone has a nice, relaxing holiday! Enjoy your people, little or otherwise.

Merry Christmas! God bless!

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