Growing up there wasn’t too many traditions that my family followed every year. The only thing that has become mandatory for me is my need to remember the past, and have that feeling of nostalgia every year. And because I have taken the step to have my own blog and air my thoughts and feelings… I am going to share some with you.
I was probably about 4 years old when we were driving home from my uncle Brian’s house on Christmas Eve. As we were turning out of his driveway, I looked into the sky and saw the shadow of a sleigh and reindeer in the air. It was so real to me. I kept my secret to myself, and waited to see if he actually would come to my house that night. The image was so vivid that I still have a hard time believing he isn’t real… although Matt is quick to assure me that he isn’t.
When I was about 5 years old I remember my brother getting a batman costume. It was epic… it had a cape, and a plastic helmet. He wore that thing everyday, everywhere. When I think of him as a child, I picture him wearing flannel pajama’s and his costume over top.
As I got older it became harder to believe that Santa was real, but my dad was good at keeping the child in us alive, and would often try to keep the belief going. One Christmas morning my brother came flying through the front door of the house, after checking outside for reindeer prints, carrying a white glove, with soot on it. We were sure that it was Santa’s --- and I remember it erasing any reason for doubt kept me thinking “well, maybe…”.
Although it’s not “magical” I like to think of my grandma filling our stockings with chocolate and then hanging them over her wood burning stove… every year. It makes me smile to think about us opening up melted chocolate every year!
As I get older my memories and nostalgia have become less magical, and more of a gong show. In our Bombay family we “pick names” every year. We usually do it way too early, which allows for a “leak”, and that doesn’t matter anyways because we can tell who got who by the look on your face when you pull the name out. I often beam when I see either of my brother in laws name's, and Matt always seems to pull his Dad or mom’s. Although, nothing is more terrifying when you pull Becci’s name… just sayin’! When Christmas day approaches we exchange gifts, open our stockings, eat an amazing meal (because my mother in law rocks) and then play Settlers. This usually leads to some kind of family fight, Mark stomping off upstairs, me crying, and everyone else saying “awkward…” and the day comes to a crashing hault. But it’s our Christmas, and that’s the way we like it.
When Matt and I decided we were going to move 2 provinces, and 3600 kilometers away from “home”, we took the risk of not being able to spend every holiday with our families. We have had to come up with our own traditions, and I think they are pretty good. The first year that we got married I found that “2 for 10” basket of DVD’s at WalMart, and was quick to pick two movies that I thought he might like. I wasn’t sure… but I figured that I might as well get them anyways, because they were cheap stocking stuffers. When he opened them on Christmas morning, the look on his face was priceless…half pity, half disbelief, yet appreciative of my efforts. I love that combination, so every Christmas for the last 4 years I have continued this game.
This year, although we are away from our family, I know that it will be a great Christmas, and one that will give us more memories and stories in the future. And this year, I got Matt’s DVD’s from the dollar store… so how could it go wrong?
*This was our first official Christmas tree, in 2008. I couldn't figure out why it didn't look that great, until I realized that it didn't have lights... among other things.*