I've celebrated a lot of Christmases. As a child, we had great ones despite my parents not having much money. My sister and I always had surprises when we woke on Christmas morning. Some of my favorites were a two story doll house built by my dad with furniture my aunt made. One year I received a Shirley Tempe doll with a carriage. (I broke the doll not long after Christmas, but that another story.) My dad made me a two-wheel bike during the war when no one could buy one. I always received books, which I managed to read before the day was over. Storybook dolls were also a wonderful present. When I got older, clothes and books were the presents I wanted.
With my own children, I tried to carry on some of the same gift giving habits--even making some items. Hubby built a Barbie doll house for our oldest daughter and I made the furniture. When the kids were little I only worked off and on--but usually before Christmas so I could pay for the presents.
When we lived in Oxnard and my folks were still in L.A. and the kids were small, we often spent Christmas at Grandma's house--doing things much like we'd done when I was a kid.
One Christmas I wasn't around for the gift opening because I had to work an early a.m. shift for the phone company. That was not fun.
When my family grew and grew, we had Christmas at home and I cooked the Christmas dinner.
Kids grew up, got married and for awhile we managed to have a Christmas celebration at either my house or my sisters with our combined families. Eventually there were way too many of us.
As time went on, and grand kids and great-grandkids arrived, each family started their own tradition.
For the last few years, we've had Christmas Eve dinner for a few of the grandkids who wanted to come with a present exchange. On Christmas morning, we headed over to the daughter's who lives nearby and watched her grandkids unwrap givfts.
This year, I think hubby and I will go to the movies on Christmas Day, something we've never done before.
What this all proves, is nothing stays the same.
We will enjoy our Christmas no matter what. I'm thankful we've had the blessing of so many past Christmases.
I wish you all a wonderful Holiday Season no matter what or how you celebrate, Happy Chanukah, Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year.