Saturday, December 27, 2008

Traditions in Transition

Santa Returns
Originally uploaded by carlamarieweir
Merry Christmas everyone! Like everyone else, our Christmas traditions, like everything in life, have evolved over time. Some of the things we used to do when the girls were little have kind of fizzled out (stockings, Santa's gifts Christmas morning), or morphed into something new (they used to make gifts for their "tias", ie. Janet, Renee, Shelley, etc.--this year Hannah has been crocheting a bunch of really cool scarves for her friends). And then there's the cooking. It just wouldn't be Christmas without turning our kitchen into a major restaurant operation. Last year we made Hallacas for the first time, MAJOR, and Sofia and Ricardo really really want to make it again so we're foregoing the traditional deboned turkey in favor of making over 80 Hallacas, yikes! Speaking of last year, my brother made very clear to me over Thanksgiving that if we forgot the girls' gifts this time I was "on my own"--I still cannot believe he drove me to Dallas and back in one the girls would have their gifts under the tree.

This year we really simplified gift giving and house decorating. It seems the whole world is scaling back. It just doesn't feel right to be lavish this year. I was reading one of my high school journals the other day and found my description of the gifts I received: a sweater from my parents, a set of hankies from my best friend Veronica, lotion from her sister Victoria. Even I was surprised by the modesty of our gifts. Christmas has become this massive shopping operation, well...not here, not any more. Now that I've scaled back, I know I won't go back, it just doesn't make sense!

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