For Christmas on my blog this year I am feeling a little more emotional, sentimental and nostalgic. For many reasons, as outlined here and here. So when I woke up at 4 am this morning, trotted downstairs, made a warm beverage and opened my Facebook to “on this day,” (you know this is one of the best parts about Facebook, right?) I knew exactly what I would post today and tomorrow on my blog – totally impromptu – always the most loved posts with a Christmas Eve Past, Present, and Future.
Christmas Eve Past
Ryan and I discussed last night how Christmas just seems different these days. I think it’s because we are not children, but he thinks it’s more than that. I thought about it some more, and I would have to agree. It’s not good or bad different, but just different. A little stroll down memory lane….
Ryan and I were married on November 1, 2008, and that Thanksgiving we went to my sister-in-laws in Kansas City for our God daughter’s baptism. With the wedding and extra travel, we decided to do our first Christmas together alone in California. I remember calling back home on Christmas Eve when all the family was at my aunt and uncles, feeling sad and like we should have gone home.
The next year, 2009 we, of course, went home. I was so excited! I love the status update about Meriden (oops, spelled it wrong back then) because this is where I grew up to a “T.” Meriden, MN has a population of about 600 people, and while I didn’t live there, we lived just a few short miles from there on gravel roads. My mother is the organist and pianist at the Meriden church. The congregation loves her!
I am telling you, I have had so much Christmas consistency nearly my entire life. Pho with Ba Ngaoi was always a hit, and so I’m glad to have mentioned it on Christmas Eve, 2010.
In 2011, I made some special Christmas gifts for my brother and sister-in-law, brother-in-law, Ryan and my parents. You can see the videos here. Back then it was awesome, but looking back on it even just 4 years later and it’s really awesome. These are the gifts you simply cannot buy, but that people can carry with forever. I got addicted to doing them after that first year.
This past year, my uncle’s Jim and David (dad’s brothers) both passed away. And I am telling you, the impact without them at Christmas Eve this year is going to be a huge one. Christmas Eve at Jack and Loan’s (I refer to them as aunt and uncle, auntie and uncle, uncle and Ba Ngaoi and/or fairy God parents because they are my one and only God parents) was always a highlight to my Christmas, and a huge night of family, the annual Kim, Loan and SKH picture, laughing, timeless, old music, food and drinks. 2012 captures it so beautifully.
The very next year our miracle was with us for her first Christmas. We stayed in California for Christmas, 2013 and my mom, dad, and brother came to us on Christmas Day. I blogged about how grateful I felt that year, and THIS was our Christmas card.
There was no status update on Christmas Eve, 2014, but we were in Minnesota, and to say the night was filled with love would be an understatement. We gave Ba Ngaoi a gift we’ll never forget.
Christmas Eve Present
It is Christmas Eve today. All the presents have been bought and are wrapped neatly, tucked away under the tree. Um, no. Obviously, I’m KIDDING! I will be scrambling to finish things up today. This is my true fashion.
Last night, Samarah, Ryan, the dogs and I went for a nice long walk in our community to see all the lights. Samarah mostly loves anything with Santa, Frozen, Mickey or Snowmen. She asked approximately 1,245 questions, (mostly, “Where’s Wagon? Where’s Fiona? Where’s mommy? Where’s daddy? Where’s Mickey?“) but loved seeing the lights and the figures.
Today we are hanging out, spending the day with just the 3 of us. Early this morning, Samarah and I will go out to finish getting Ryan a couple things. We will go to late afternoon or early evening church, and then spend some time with Jen’s family at their Christmas Eve in Alameda. I can’t wait to show you her adorable self in her Christmas dress.
We also have big plans for snacking on my Puppy Chow and making Lefse (Ryan, not me).
Christmas Eve Future
Are we sad to not be in Minnesota this year? Of course. That sting never goes away, no matter how much things change or how old we get. But here’s the deal – I will love every single minute of today, this Christmas Eve because it is the last one we will have as a family of 3. Next year at this time we will be a family of 4 or 5 and things will be, yet again, drastically different.
I hope you have a most wonderful Christmas Eve.
I’ll be back tomorrow with Christmas Day Past, Present, and Future. (Because I know one day I’ll look back at these and feel so grateful I did them.)