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A Christmas to Remember

Some Christmases stick out more than others, don’t they? Like the Christmas you received exactly what you were pining for, like a fish tank with real fish to which to tend. The Christmas your brother cut his head open on the edge of the coffee table after jumping on the couch, causing you to throw up in anxiousness for him. The first Christmas you spent away from home. The one where you walked down the aisle to your groom. The Christmas when part of your family was unemployed and Christmas, albeit slightly different, was the most meaningful and simple. Or the Christmas you were waddling with a watermelon-sized baby in your belly and your house flooded two weeks before that baby was supposed to make his grand appearance. Most of those memories emote giddy excitement and sweet nostalgia, while others (namely two) spark nausea. And if there’s any question about which two, well, let me just say blood and flood.

This Christmas I’ve entered into new territory. That melon-sized baby is no longer in my belly (thank the Lord), but is rather a two and a half foot moving target with eyes that light up at the sparkly lights and whose fingers love to grasp hold of the cushy needle-pointed nativity figures on the coffee table. There is so much to savor, to capture. Brennan won’t remember his first Christmas, but with the simple wonder of watching a child during Christmas, it certainly makes it, for me, a Christmas to remember.

These are just a few things I treasure thus far this season:

  • Last Wednesday night, we bundled up and went to a nursery to buy our Christmas tree, named Farley (the nursery-given name). I mustered up the motivation to tackle the decorating the same night after Brennan went down to bed. Reading Amanda’s story here about her little boy Jackson waking up to a decorated, lit tree, inspired me. I was pleasantly surprised that it didn’t take too long. I suppressed as much of my perfectionism as possible. I would’ve cursed the lights, however, if there wasn’t a simple solution to be had for the incongruous strand that didn’t plug into any of the others. I was elated to get Brennan out of bed the next morning to show him our Christmas tree. He’s shown much interest in some of the ornaments and particularly Gaga’s hand-made nativity tree skirt. He doesn’t quite understand how come they don’t come off the skirt.

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  • A couple of weeks ago, the two of us ventured to Hobby Lobby where I let Brennan pick out an ornament for his little tree in his room. While my eyes were scanning the rows of ornaments, there was one that stuck out to Brennan immediately. His tiny finger pointed directly at a big face of a Collie. I grabbed it to let him play with it, slightly amused and pleased he obviously loves dogs, while I looked for another option thinking any other ornament but that one (not ‘cause it’s A&M related, because I am a faithful Aggie fan, but because it was a big, huge dog head! I am seriously having to make up with my family after my “We’re going to the national championship game” comment). With a small snowman in hand, I turned to leave, whereupon the Collie fell to the floor and started playing the TX A&M fight song. I didn’t realize it was supposed to be TX A&M’s mascot, Reveille! It even sheds. Brennan had fur all over his hands from playing with it. So out we walked with a shedding, fight-song-playing, huge dog head of a Christmas ornament for 2009. Just look, it’s almost as big as the bears:


Here’s Brennan’s first ornament for our big tree from my parents and the one below it is one I found at Hallmark to mark his first Christmas.



  • After two attempts in which tears and exasperation ensued (for both me and the boy) to take some pictures by the tree in one of my favorite outfits of Brennan’s, we finally captured some happy shots.

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  • We can walk into a crowded store, and while my heart may sink or easily become anxious at the thought of standing in a long line with an 11 month old, he instead is all smiles and waves, having the pure ability to transform even the grumpiest, impatient of sorts into friendly faces.

  • One of my most favorite times of the day during this season is when we give Brennan his last bottle of the day, peaceful Christmas music is playing in the background, the tree lights are on and the rest of the lights are dimmed. We sit around the kitchen table, light the Advent candles, go through our Advent readings, and pray together while Brennan falls asleep in his Daddy’s arms. (This is during breakfast, but you can see the Advent wreath).

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  • It’s also been the tender, simple moments with Brennan that will be etched in my heart as seasons pass: singing “Silent Night” on the player piano; snuggling together reading The Three Trees (a powerful tale); playing with the nativity scenes together and talking about each of the characters; gazing at his little tree together with the lights on in the quiet peacefulness of his room; taking him outside to show him all of the beautiful lights his Daddy worked so hard to put up; staying warm and toasty by the fire in our PJs while it’s cold and drizzly outside; enjoying our walks in the cool of the day when the sun finally comes out, looking at everyone’s Christmas decorations; and lots and lots of snuggling.  Oh yes, there have been rough moments, days when he’s clingy and crying and miserable because of teething and what not, but that’s not what I’ll remember about this Christmas. This, this is the image I’ll remember about Christmas:


What are some of the things you’ll treasure about this Christmas so far?


I am assuming that by 'We', you met Alabama! :) Regardless, this was one of my favorite posts ever and I love his maroon sweater!

Isn't it wonderful how special holidays are with children around! I am just loving having my family around, and seeing how excited both kids are to decorate and bake for the holidays. This is my favorite time of year!

Seriously, everything about this post warmed my heart!!!!!! Beautiful :)

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