Kate Parks, parent
Christmas to me is Family. That’s the first thing I think of when someone mentions
Christmas. Of course being Mum to two young daughters I suppose that is to be
expected. But it’s not just about them, it’s the time of year my parents and sister
stay over so we can all wake up together on Christmas morning. It’s the traditions
that you set as a family.
The ‘jingle bell of the reindeers’ on Christmas Eve dropping off new pyjamas and a little early Christmas present to the girls for being good.Getting dressed up and stepping out into the crisp cold winter air to go to Church on Christmas Eve. Waking at the crack of dawn on Christmas Day, following the chocolate coin trail Father Christmas has left. Then of course, the excitement of present unwrapping on Christmas morning; the joy I take from watching my daughters’ faces as they open their presents is something unrivalled.
The whole family squeezing around the dining table for Christmas dinner, cutlery clattering, laughing, chatting, Christmas crackers and eating too much turkey. Followed by the inevitable comatose state on the sofa around the television, yet still finding the room for one more chocolate.
I suppose now I’m thinking about it, when I say family, that expands at Christmas.
It means all the friends and colleagues you make that extra effort to make sure you
see. It’s the school family; singing along at carol concerts, helping out at Christmas
Fairs, making Christmas hats and watching school plays. It’s the Church family; the
excitement and joy that surround Mass, celebrating the true meaning of Christmas.
How the church community come together, greet each other, hug and send Christmas wishes and messages of love.
It’s the local community; friendly greetings become more frequent, there is a push to help those who are less fortunate with Christmas present appeals, collections of drawstring bags full of food and toiletries for the homeless and collection tins jingling with coins. There is an increase in the general willingness to help those less fortunate. It is the time of year, despite the frenzy of activity, you stop and be thankful for what you have, for the family and friends that you love.
That’s Christmas to me.