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I had big plans this year. This year, I would not wait until the last minute to start Christmas shopping – I might even finish early! I would do a little Christmas cookie baking for my co-workers and neighbors. I would make sure my almost 4 year old Finn learned what Louie Armstrong meant when he sang about “Christmastime in New Orleans.” And on top of that, I would plan an impressive 4th birthday party for Finn for the first week of 2014.

And then I got sick. And then Finn got sick. Thankfully just a cold, but bad enough to make us not want to do anything but sleep for the 2 weeks before Christmas. No one wanted homemade cookies from our germ invested kitchen. There was no Celebration in the Oaks or Miracle on Fulton Street for our family this year.  We’d be once again be picking up last minute gifts on Christmas Eve. And with bday invites never actually making it in the mail, Finn’s birthday party is postponed.

Not quite the grande holidays I had planned. But maybe the holidays I needed? We didn’t spend those weeks in traffic trying to find that perfect Christmas present. We didn’t waste hours in the kitchen baking cookies that we imagined being “pinterest perfect” only to turn out mediocre. We didn’t wait in long lines in cold or rainy weather to see Mr. Bingle or snow fall.

We didn’t get to make those memories this year. But we did make other memories. We cuddled on the couch in our snuggies and watched Christmas movies. And my husband, Doug brought us a steady supply of egg drop soup and ice cream, (which I know you’re not supposed to eat when you have a cold, but it’s always exactly what I want!)

Fortunately we started our family countdown to Christmas before we got ill. So even while we were sniffling and coughing, we were excited that we were getting closer to Christmas! And with everyday of the countdown, we read a part of the Biblical Christmas story.

And I can’t help but be a tiny bit thankful that during this unusually busy time, that I’ve been forced to slow down. That this Christmas I’ve had to skip some of those extras that I usually add on to make a more memorable Christmas. And in doing so, I’m able to return to reason for the season.

-Julie

 

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