Just a few weeks after our son was born, we celebrated our first Christmas as a family. It was quiet and modest, a peaceful time together that became the benchmark for all future Christmas celebrations. In church for Christmas Eve, at home for Christmas Day, and three gifts for each child . . . just as the magi honored the Newborn King.
Certainly there are gifts from family and friends and wonderful gatherings throughout the holidays, but Christmas Day was and is just us, a few well-chosen gifts, a stocking full of candy and trinkets, the scent of homemade cinnamon rolls and coffee drifting through the house, and hours lolling in our pajamas.
Those traditions continue today at the Knitternall house. We'll have dinner at home, drive around Dunwoody to see the Christmas lights, and be at St. Luke's for the candlelit Christmas Eve service at 11:00 pm. For breakfast, I'm baking a new cinnamon roll recipe - one by Alton Brown's that is absolutely perfect. I've made them twice, and they don't last long.
Our kids deliberate carefully as they prepare their wish lists. They ask only what they really, really want, with some gentle guidance from us. T and I, too, tend to be somewhat pragmatic about our wishes.
A has a few manga and Wii games that he'd enjoy on his list.
AG is into shoes, journals, and animals.
I'd like to have a fire pit. I have a perfect spot for it in the back yard.
T wants some new sneaks, something simple - not flashy. And ties are always welcome, especially those with his favorite shade of federal blue.
The economy is scary and this is not a good time to go overboard. But since we've always kept things simple and focused on the spirit of the holiday, our Christmas will be just as meaningful this year as it always has been.
I can't wait to savor those cinnamon rolls!