Today is Christmas Day. My brother is with his wife's family right now and should be arriving later this evening, in time for X-mas dinner. We usually do a Christmas lunch but compromises have to be made when there are in-laws to be factored in. My mom is having a hard time adjusting to the change.
Our former traditions are as follows: Christmas Eve service at good ole' CLPC, the church I grew up with. Last night, I went there with only my parents. In the past, I would see my good friends, Jocelyn and Emily at church that night. Emily's parents have moved away and Jocelyn is with her in-laws. I don't like that change much.
On Christmas morning we usually wake up and open our presents. This year it seemed too strange to open all our gifts without Andrew. We didn't want to wait and open them all with our extended family. They would be opening two or three gifts while we opened a dozen. That seemed a bit too weird also. So, my mom, dad and I opened all of our non-surprise gifts. I'd opened my wii fit weeks ago at my dad's insistence but I did open my new slippers, iPod and biking shorts.
Usually after we have our little family Christmas, we head over to my grandma and grandpa's to have Christmas lunch and present opening time with my mom's family. The family always has to eat before we open the presents. This proved painful during most of my childhood. I am not the most patient person especially when I see presents stacked under the tree. The only thing standing between me and my presents was always my aunt Kathy's painfully slow eating. It was excrutiatingly painful to wait. I would go to the tree and sort all the presents paying special attention to how many I had versus how many my brother had. Now my grandparents live in a fancy old folks home and don't have room to host. My parents have become the hosts.
After lunch, I would distribute the presents and we would all unwrap. Gifts from extended family are always random and usually amusing. This year, my brother and his family won't be here until later so we will have a Christmas dinner. A few years ago, we started going to the movies after our Christmas lunch/ present unwrap. I don't think it will work this year with our Christmas dinner. Well, change is not all bad. I did get to watch Home Alone today, which is not a real tradition yet but may become one.
We just have to get used to the end of old traditions and the beginning of new ones.
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