It is dark outside on the morning of Christmas Eve and there is still so much to do before tomorrow’s special celebration of family. I will bake all the special treats that are only eaten on holidays. But I wanted to take a few minutes to share something special that we did this year and the difference it made for us as a family.
At the end of each Christmas our family always feels somewhat over full from getting… we know we have enough stuff yet we want to acknowledge and appreciate each other in some meaningful way… we have struggled with it for the past couple of years as the kids become adults and the magic and wonder of surprise becomes the stress of having enough for everyone…
So this year we adopted a family that we have never met and will never meet. It was offered through a radio station after Thanksgiving and on the spur of the moment I called and accepted a single mom with 3 little kids.
The station sent me their Christmas list complete with sizes and favorite colors and it included their wish list (of things they did not think they would get but wanted or needed). I called my family and told them what I had done and with mixed feelings we went to work.
As we started shopping and buying things for the children… picking out toys and clothes, dishes, and books, towels, pj’s, yo yos for stockings… suddenly, even though we were not going to be there to see them open these gifts… the Magic of Christmas became more real then it has been in years. We cared what they wanted, whether they would like it, was it going to bring joy to their lives, would it entertain or keep them warm.
Our whole family spent a full day together where we laughed, wrapped presents, and had a big, messy crab pot dinner and were full of the joy of giving.
There is something so special about giving to someone who has no idea whether they will get their Christmas list items or not… it was especially great to get a bright shiny bike and stick a bow on it. I remember the morning my children got their first bikes and the amazing joy it was for them for get outside and ride in the freezing cold. Well, quite simply, it was magical for them and that is what I hope and anticipate for the family we adopted. That they really feel like something magical has happened for them.
But the real magic was that our family felt great about it. We shared in something that makes the holidays real… We got to be Santa and honestly, I can say that this holiday has been one of the best, although not traditional, we have had in years.
I know that next year we will do this again and it will be better organized (I hope).
I truly wish you all a happy holiday and the very best of seasons with your family, friends, and loved ones. The times they are a changing and the magic is where you make it!
Please spread the joy good will to all.