I've been wanting to do this post since my last bah-humbug post and have been afraid that I won't do it justice. I will try tonight and see how it all comes out. First, I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. We sure did!! On that last post, I referenced that article from a blog that I don't know, Jen Hatmaker. I had never read her before but that doesn't mean that I won't check in from now on to see what she has to say. There are several blogs I read of people that I don't know. At times, this feels really weird to me and sometimes I find myself questioning whether or not I should keep reading it. Most of them are very public blogs that millions of people read so I don't feel like too much of a stalker. One of them is Enjoying the Small Things by Kelle Hampton. She is a beautiful writer and her blog really took off in the public eye when she had her second baby that came with an "extra magic chromosome" as she calls it; Downs Syndrome. Anyway, she wrote a post at the beginning of the month and at the end of it she asked what your most magical, meaningful childhood memory of Christmas is. For me that is a tough question. There are quite a few because I've always had a very blessed Christmas experience. But, when I truly sat and thought about it, all those Christmases growing up I came down to one person in my life.
When I think back on my Christmas memories she is the person that I see. She always truly enjoyed her time with us at Christmas time. I loved going to the airport or to the MARTA station to pick her and Grandpa up for the week. There was always so much anticipation. And, I was always so excited to show her my new Christmas outfit on Christmas Eve when we would all get dressed up to go to church and then have a nice dinner. And, she always came with us to church then even though throughout the year she didn't go to church, not having been raised Catholic. On Christmas morning, she just loved watching us open our gifts and I know she has so many memories of all her grandkids and our excitement on those mornings after Santa had come. I still remember the year that I found out the truth about Santa and she sat down on my bed with me and asked me about how I was feeling and if I was okay. I will always remember watching the movie "White Christmas" with her and how she loved singing the songs with us and seeing the girls dance in the movie.
She is my most Meaningful Memory. Since she has had her stroke (6 years ago) and I have been married and had at least Brice, Christmas has been different. We used to always be together ON Christmas Day but now we (Reynolds) usually travel to Charlotte, NC to see her before the actual day. My Aunt Deb has been gracious enough to go pick Grandma and Grandpa up in St. Louis and fly them down to Charlotte so that we could all see each other for the holidays. This year we did it differently again and my grandparents stayed in St. Louis and my aunt's family went there to see them while my parents stayed here to spend the actual Eve and Day with us. My cousin Jonathan and fiance are now up in St. Louis and my cousin Kristen is in Chicago so we (they) made it all work. I, of course, hated not getting to see my grandparents at Christmas time this year, especially since they have never met Kyle. While I know things must change (with new spouses, and babies) and new memories have to be made, it still stung a little, or maybe a lot, when Jonathan sent me this picture with the caption, "Merry Christmas from Grandma".