As we shopped in the store the other day, I kind of hated going out in the traffic and fighting the maddening crowds. Then having to stand in the long lines and just feeling impatient really got me out of the holiday spirit.
Suddenly I made a conscious effort to change my attitude. First off, I was thankful that I had a car so I could get out in the traffic. Crowds meant that people were spending money and hopefully helping the economy. Long lines were a good way to slow down the pace a little and get perspective.
I started to listen to the sounds around me and noticed some things:
I heard people’s excitement as they looked at the beautiful decorations that were offered.
I heard people discussing what gifts to get for family members and friends. While discussing, sometimes a cute story would pop up about a specific person.
I saw people greet friends they haven’t seen in a while but saw them while out shopping.
I heard Christmas music and noticed some people singing along without even knowing they were doing so.
I heard children talking happily about Santa and what they hoped they would get for Christmas.
I started remembering some wonderful Christmas memories.
I remember the Christmas Eve candlelight service my family went to every year at midnight. My parents were not big church goers, and since my dad worked every Christmas Eve, my mom would go with us to this service. It always made me feel humble and thankful for my life. I remember that any friends that I was angry with, this night we always made up and hugged each other at church.
I remember going out with my church youth group and caroling at shut-ins homes. It was so much fun and it warmed my heart. Usually people would give us cookies. Then we would return to the church for some hot chocolate to warm us.
I remember going ice skating on a nearby outdoor lake (once the fire dept. declared it safe) and hearing the Christmas music in the background. It was so cold but it was fun! There was usually a Christmas tree set up on the ice.
I remember waiting for my father to come home from work about 1am, and opening our Christmas presents on Christmas Eve. I couldn’t wait for him to come home!
I remember my parents sleeping in on Christmas Day while I got up and played with my toys near the Christmas tree in the morning.
I remember wonderful family dinners we had on Christmas Day. I didn’t realize at the time at how lucky I was to have such a loving family.
I remember helping my mother send out Christmas cards. She had a book with a list of people and addresses and we would go through each one. A check went by their name if we received card from them.
So, now that I look at this differently, going out shopping in the traffic and crowds has been a good thing. These old memories and new ones being made have put me in the Christmas spirit again.
So, hurry up Santa! I can’t wait for Christmas to come!
So, what Christmas memories do you have? Please share.