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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Holiday Magic...

I'll admit it...this time of year tends to make me emotional. I can hear a Christmas song on the radio and feel the hair on my arms stand up. I can glimpse a commercial about a family being apart over the holidays and I feel a lump in my throat. I can watch "Yes, Virginia" with my girls and bawl my eyes out.

This time of year makes my heart grow three sizes just like it did to the Grinch when he heard the Whos singing Christmas morning, hand in hand, even after their presents and decorations had been stolen. This time of year is when I look for the good in people and let go of the bad.

I've always enjoyed the holidays as an adult but they have truly come to life again since the birth of my daughters. Seeing things through their eyes brings back the magic and wonder.

Christmas lights decorating houses were just something that I drove by and gave a hurried glance to before my girls. Now I slow and point out the detail and ask them their favorite house on the particular street we are on. Now I go the "long way" to/from our destination so they can see as many lights as possible before all of the houses go dark again for a year.

The tree and reindeer in our
front yard

Putting the ornaments some years seemed a chore for me. I loved the finished product but I didn't want to take the time to unwrap the ornaments and hang them all. Now my girls sit with me and get excited with each ornament that unveils itself from behind the tissue paper or bubble wrap. We go over the history of it and then search for the best place for it to go on our tree.

Some of the ornaments on
our Christmas tree

Starting new traditions, like the Advent Ornament Tower, that my MIL sent to my girls brings even more warmth and excitement. They wake each morning asking the date, rush to their own small tree to open the box in the tower, find their new ornament and decorate their tree day by day. It is a wonderful way to share in the fun of counting down the days until Christmas with them.

Ash & Bean decorating their
own tree with the Advent Tower

The Christmas surprise of searching and finding Candy Cane, our Elf on the Shelf, has become a lot of fun. I love to hear them laugh about what he is doing when they find him and their thoughts about what he did and said at his report to Santa the night before.

Candy Cane on one of my
favorite Christmas

Just as I have been trying to slow down and enjoy the minutes of our every day, I am trying to do the same during the holiday. I don't want my girls to miss a thing. I don't want to miss a thing. It is easy to get caught up in the rushing around with all that has to be done and all that is on our calendars but we are making an effort. We are sitting down to dinner at our table (even if it is with Chickfila), lighting our Advent wreath and saying our prayers as a family.

Our family made Advent wreath

We will not let the holiday magic slip away and we will welcome every holiday surprise! I wish for all of you to enjoy this holiday magic and that you hold it close to your heart! The holiday spirit is there if you let it in!

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At December 15, 2011 at 1:50 PM , Blogger Kristin said...

Awww wonderful post Kristen :D I feel the same way at CHristms time..i'm extra mushy and cry so easily. But that's what Christmas is about. So cheers to us for having the true Christmas spirit in our hearts. :D xoxo

At December 15, 2011 at 2:21 PM , Blogger Infertile Mormon Mommy said...

I'm looking forward to all of this next year when Miss K is old enough to be excited! :)

At December 15, 2011 at 3:14 PM , Blogger KLZ said...

I love that peacock ornament. I'm tempted to covet it although I know I'm not supposed to.

At December 15, 2011 at 4:35 PM , Anonymous Tonya said...

Thanks for leading me over here to read this today... there is something magical and very emotional about all the beautiful decorations and lovely carols. And having a child makes it all that much more special.

Thanks, again.

At December 15, 2011 at 4:42 PM , Blogger Maren said...

I've lost my Christmas spirit when I grew up, and I can't manage to find it. Maybe one day. :)

Love that ad!

At December 15, 2011 at 9:56 PM , Blogger The Southern Fried Bride said...

I found your blog through SITS and I am your newest follower!

At December 16, 2011 at 11:11 AM , Anonymous OneMommy said...

Children bring a whole new magic to Christmas. We haven't gotten to see any lights yet this year; I'm going to have to load them up this evening and make a point to go see some. I know they will Eww and Ahh over them.

I love your little elf. I'm thinking we might need to get one for next year. Maybe I can find one for Santa to bring this year...

At December 16, 2011 at 12:28 PM , Blogger Liz @ A Nut in a Nutshell said...

You have such enviable Christmas spirit. I love it!

At December 16, 2011 at 3:25 PM , Blogger Mommy Inconsistent said...

Love this post! I so agree. I've been saying "no" (what a concept) to some things this month and have been feeling strangely crafty. My calendar for the rest of the month is wonderfully blank and I plan to keep it that way and spend time with my boys doing fun holiday stuff! It all goes by too fast. Merry Christmas to you too!!

At December 18, 2011 at 10:15 PM , Blogger Gia said...

Great pictures! Except for elf on a shelf. He freaks me out because he's so creepy looking. Shudder.

At January 11, 2012 at 10:36 AM , Blogger Jill said...

Is that a yodeling peacock on the tree?! Awesome!


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