I quietly recognized early this weekend that each moment of my four days with the grandkids celebrating Christmas may be my last. We all have a last Christmas, and most of us simply never look at it that way. So many Christmas pasts have been too much hustle and bustle and not enough quality time with family. You take those closest to you for granted. During the Christmas seasons we make these obligatory gestures toward family, and often only go through the motions. I did not post much the last four days, not because I was being antisocial, rather I was cherishing every moment with all three of my grandkids with a new one on the way.
I had long discussions with my oldest four year old as she shares her views of the world, and tries to correct poor papa. We have a tradition of playing scrabble, but this year the four year old got to play apple to apples a unique board game where a person is given 7 cards which describe something which are the answer cards, and then you take a question card and each player gives an answer with their card. Well the four year old could not read, but she could toss one of her answer cards into the box, and she was so excited to be playing a grownup game other than candyland. It was at that moment, I remembered in detail my last Christmas with my father.
Christmas 1961 was the usual excitement of kids opening their presents, but what was so memorable was that Santa had given a game which was a four horse race with four rings in the middle of the game with a horse attached. Around the perimeter of the horse track were clear plastic bubble which had a plunger where when you pushed the plunger down, a large ball bearing would fly up to a platform with a hole in it and the ball would fall through the hole and advance one of the rings on the track. A finish/start line started the race and all four players plunged away with the player who could put his ball bearing the most times in their hole would win the game.
My memories of sitting around that simple horse race gift were the last memories of my father who as a 10 year old lost him three months later. You see we will all have a last Christmas. So slow down, take a little time to make Christmas not so obligatory, or unpleasant because we all have family members who can push our buttons.......rather think of it as your last Christmas and cherish every moment and every family member......I guarantee you will have an enjoyable Christmas, and we will all create new memories.