Snowflakes and Christmas

Snow and snowflakes are always associated with Christmas – everyone loves a “White Christmas,” right? And every child learns that each snowflake is different, just as every child is different and unique, beautiful and special. At least that is what we want to believe as children…

snowflake 1

Christmas and snowflakes have a special meaning and relationship for me because, like snowflakes, every Christmas is beautiful and special. With the exception of one Christmas, I have always found a way to celebrate Christmas together with my family – and every one has been unique and different. One year, my car ran into a ditch on the way to my parents’ house on Christmas Eve. Another, my car had to be jumped to get it started; I had pretty bad luck with cars in my youth, LOL!

In recent years, as my siblings have started their own families, the number of holiday celebrants has grown, one niece or nephew at a time, till our family’s once “five” on Christmas Eve has grown to a dozen.

snowflake 2

Our family Christmas celebrations have always been held at my parents’ house. Typically we gather on Christmas Eve, have dinner, maybe go to Midnight Mass then open gifts after. It is fun. It is loud. It is loving and joyful and magic. It is family and everything good about Christmas, all in my parents’ living room…

It has been that way all my life. However, this year will be a little different.

My Mom passed away five years ago, and my family struggled to re-invent the holidays after she left us. I think we have done a pretty good job, and know she would be proud (although it is definitely different without her with us). This year, though, will be a little hard again.

This will be our last Christmas together at my parents’ house…

snowflake 3

After more than forty years in the same house – forty-three, I think! – my Dad has decided to downsize to a condo and sell the house. And while I am happy that he is making life easier and more manageable for himself, I cannot lie: I am sad that this will be the last Christmas on Lorwood Drive. We have had a lot of fun and happy times there…

snowflake 4

So on Monday, 23 December, my family will celebrate our last Christmas at the house we all (mostly) grew up in – we’ll laugh and remember Christmases past, revel in this one and talk about NEXT year, when we will celebrate in Pop-pop’s tony new condo. Personally, I will honor the spirit and memory of our four-decade “holiday house,” grieve a little, then smile and look forward to next year, in our “new” holiday house.

It shouldn’t be too bad because I know that, just like snowflakes, next year’s Christmas will be different and unique, beautiful and special, just like always…

snowflake 5

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