What a week! I came down with a virus, my oldest came down with a case of hives, and we've spent one of our last weeks, Christmas week, in the house feeling somewhat icky! The expectations of a magical week before the holidays was fading fast.
As the week has come to a close I finally got to the store for a few small gifts. We have adopted a simpler life over the past few years and have really minimized our consumption around the holidays. Every year bringing less things, but more happiness. That being said I just can't help myself and feel drawn to getting the boys even the smallest things to open in the morning.
As I walked through the aisles I was suddenly swarmed with emotions. Happiness, joy, sadness, anxiety, guilt....I had them all in a very short time frame. My eyes welled with tears yet I couldn't quite put a finger on exactly why. Couldn't even really tell if it was joyful tears or sad ones. Lacking a real childhood full of traditions I have always craved that for my children. I am so happy with the changes we have made over the years and so grateful for the opportunity to now be a traveling family but during the holidays I just feel like I should be doing more to maintain traditions with the kids.
As we sit in shorts, in tropical weather, it doesn't even feel like Christmas. In Bangkok they started decorating a while ago, but here in Chiang Mai they just started 1 week before Christmas. Not exactly the perfect recipe for getting in the spirit. Luckily there are many trees set up at the condo we are staying at, the owners even let the kids help decorate! So Christmas is here whether we feel it or not.
I guess part of it is that the day doesn't feel any more special than any other day! But what I realized as we all sat around last night watching It's a Wonderful Life, laughing, and sharing stories, is that Christmas NOT feeling like a special day IS what makes me so incredibly lucky! We spend everyday living, loving, and laughing together! Not everyone gets to say that but we do and for that I can set aside any expectations of specific pies or special decorations or even spending time with extended family and friends.
A magical Christmas? Yeah we have that and then some! Stay tuned to find out how we made this Christmas magical and one of our best yet!