Column: Something magical about Christmas

Dec. 22, 2013 @ 06:08 AM

Only a few days away and all of the festivities will be over, including the shopping, family get-togethers and great meals. The carefully wrapped presents will be opened and the paper tossed. A few days after that the tree and decorations will be stored away for another year. Then we’ll race into 2014.

But there is always something magical about Christmas. People are a bit friendlier. The lights are bright and beautiful. The singing is more powerful.

When I was young it was all about Santa and school and church activities. It was about my mother’s delicious homemade candy and the birthday cake she would make for the baby Jesus. It was about the special Christmas Eve celebrations with my cousins, aunts and uncles and grandparents. It was about the surprises under the tree on Christmas morning and going to church with my family. It was especially exciting whenever it snowed on Christmas Eve, leaving that storybook white Christmas behind.

When my daughter was young it was about creating that same magic and starting some new traditions.

Today it’s still about the magic but it’s just a bit different. It’s still about church, but now I have a better appreciation of spending some quiet time with friends, relaxing and visiting just like I did last Sunday and last night. It’s about the simplicity of the star on top of the mountain and the beautiful light display and music in downtown Lenoir. It’s about buying clothes and toys for a small girl that I’ll never meet and dropping coins in the Salvation Army kettle. It’s about making candy from the old cookbook that my mother gave me decades ago and sharing the treats with family and co-workers. It’s understanding what my parents used to say many years ago, “There’s really nothing that I need” when my daughter asks about gifts. It’s about spending some time with my daughter and my new son-in-law. It’s about attending midnight Mass or the services at the Chapel of Rest and Skyping my siblings on Christmas Day.

To me it’s just as magical, and here’s wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas!