I just love this time of year. I actually start getting excited about 2 weeks after Halloween. The weather starts to cool down, it's almost time for Thanksgiving (and leftover turkey sandwiches), and the Christmas season is right around the corner. I have always loved Christmas. I loved it as a child, I loved it as a single adult with no little ones to celebrate with, I loved it as an Aunt and being able to share it with my niece and nephews and I love it as a stepmom. It's not the gifts that I love so much, it's everything. I love it when the lights and decorations are up in the outdoor malls and hearing Christmas music in all the stores and seeing the Salvation Army outside of Albertson's and Walmart, ringing their little bells. I love putting up decorations and making the house look magical. I love that people are nicer to each other and all of the excuses to get together for mini parties. I love celebrating the birth of Jesus and reading Luke 2. I love classic holiday movies like It's a Wonderful Life and the Bells of Saint Mary's and A Christmas Story and White Christmas and watching A Charlie Brown Christmas and The Grinch on TV. I love Eggnog Latte's at Starbuck's and Nestle Peppermint Mocha coffee creamer and baking goodies to share with friends. I love getting Christmas cards in the mail and shopping for creative stocking stuffers for my family. I love just for a moment in time, still believing that maybe it is possible that Santa is real.
Whatever your schedule this year, please don't forget the real reason we celebrate and take the time to enjoy the lights and smell the pine and call your Grandmother just to say I love you. I know it's easy to get caught up in the shopping and cramming as much into our schedules as possible, but before you know it, Christmas will be gone and you'll be trying to keep your New Year's resolutions and wondering where the time went. So, have a piece of fudge, watch Miracle on 34th Street for the 150th time, stay up until midnight wrapping gifts, but don't forget to take delight in celebrating the birth of our Savior and appreciating all the gifts in your life.