Updated: Jan 1, 2020
We have arrived! To me Christmas Eve and Christmas Day are a blend of one. Growing up Christmas Eve was celebrated by the German side of my family, my mother's side. Christmas day was a mix of our new American culture mixed with our Italian heritage, my father's side. You see, I'm the first American born in my family and so we were rich in blending our European cultures with the American ones. My parents were very proud to become American and so even though their English language dripped with accents, it never stopped them from speaking English and learning the culture.
I do have to say though, it is my European culture especially the foods that I love most about the holidays. Both sets of relatives, the Germans and the Italians could cook and bake! Therefore Christmas Eve is a big meal and Christmas night just as big. It feels as if it is two days in one of eating.
This year it was just my mom and pets for Christmas eve and she wanted to keep it simple so we did. I watched the Vatican Christmas Mass on television staying up later than normal. I slept in on Christmas day and took a walk with some of my dogs. Ran into some neighbors and exchanged holidays wishes, and then it started to sprinkle on us the way home! Loved the cool air and mist of rain.
On Christmas evening it was just my brothers, one niece, mom, and pets of course. My family is a huge animal loving family so the dogs are every bit a part of our time together. Again my mom wanted to keep it simple so we did. During the two days I was mindful to turn off my phone for most of the two days. Here and there maybe a handful at best on Facebook to post or to read posts, but other than that, I wanted to be in the moment with my family. I wanted feel myself being in the spirit and embrace the celebration of Christmas. I did start a new tradition though, I had everyone decorate a Christmas bulb. It could be pictures, words, inspiration. It actually went well and everyone seemed pleased with sharing too! That in itself gave everyone reason at the table not to be connected to their phones too! Heaven! So nice to be together and not turned off to talking to each other because of technology.
My family left by 6:30 p.m. and by 7:00 p.m. I was in bed. In most parts of Europe, December 26 is still part of the Christmas holiday so this blog entry is just in time. What I come to understand is that I arrived in my life. I feel completely comfortable in my skin for being me and that is thanks to my heart driven purpose! Not having to keep up with anyone's pressure our schedules, but listening to my own needs not saying yes to others which is a sharp no to me if I do. Instead listening to my heart and understanding when my body is tired and needs rest. It is so liberating to give myself permission to rest and to say no. The Christmas spirit needed space in my life to be full of it and in a sense this Christmas season that is just what I did. I gave Christmas a place to be in my life.