Laura Rennie

a grown-up Christmas

Laura R.Comment
Before, my Grandma Mom (what we call my mom's mom) would spend the night on Christmas Eve and we would have a big dinner and go to the Christmas Eve service. On Christmas day I would open boxes of American Eagle sweaters and dangly earrings and CDs and maybe a cell phone or a camera. I would play with my presents until 2:00 and then leave for Grandma Jean's condo in Arlington. I would happily accept money envelopes from my relatives and then sneak off to the den to watch TV or play cards with my cousins until it was time to eat. My grandma would have everyone stand in a circle and hold hands and sing Praise God from whom all blessings flow, praise Him all creatures here below, praise Him above, ye Heavenly host, praise Father, Son and Holy Ghost. 

Now Grandma Mom is in a nursing home and Andy had to work on Christmas Eve. A couple of my presents this year :: a cake stand, a berry strainer, and a creamer (among other wonderful goodies). Instead of having presents to play with I had a present I shed tears over (too-small jeans). Grandma Jean passed away this year so we went to my Uncle Bill's house for Christmas dinner instead.

So you see, Christmas has changed. I receive grown-up gifts, have grown-up responsibilities, grown-up issues and trials that I must deal with as maturely as I know how. Yet, I was blessed by what a wonderful day this Christmas turned out to be. I ate like royalty, Skyped with my brother who lives in Korea, had a fabulous time talking and laughing with aunts and uncles and cousins (I no longer retreat to the kid's table), watched two episodes of Sherlock with my family and went to bed feeling like a little girl again.

Some family traditions will never change, like waiting at the top of the stairs for the go-ahead from mom and dad, seeing presents under the tree but turning into the den to open stockings first, having coffee and hot chocolate and oohing and aahing over other people's gifts, eating a huge breakfast and receiving one last gift at bedtime. 

Todd, Katie, me, Andy
we miss you John-Michael!!!
It was a Merry Christmas.