Home for the Holidays

I couldn’t wait any longer…. the anticipation was too great….I needed some Christmas cheer and I needed it now! After trying to hold out as long as possible, last weekend my family put up the Christmas tree and all of the home decor that entails. Yes, I am one of “those people” who can’t wait until the day after Thanksgiving to begin the Christmas season. This year I was especially anxious to get started because of how much hatred and unkindness has been sneaking its way into my life via social media and the news. I was ready for some holiday cheer! 

My main goal during the Christmas season is to make my home warm and cozy to all who visit. I want them to feel like they are “home for Christmas.” There is always a bountiful variety of hot chocolate, cider, and holiday flavored coffees for friends and family to warm themselves with. After next weekend there will be Christmas cookies in the freezer to set out for guests after my in-laws and I have our Christmas cookie baking day (blog coming on this later). Our gas fireplace is at the ready complete with stockings hung with care. And we have not one, but two beautiful trees in our family room with beautiful lights aglow. Sometimes it feels like I have stepped into one of the Hallmark Christmas movies I love so much! 

But what makes our home a Home for Christmas? It’s not the cozy atmosphere or the abundance of holiday decor. Being home for Christmas is all about having joy in our hearts and a place to feel love for each other. So is our home a Home for Christmas? Not always….

While the tree decorating was commencing I always try to hold myself together. I want to keep the peace and have a joyful time. But the OCD mom in me always seems to kick in. For example, we had unpacked the Christmas “toys” for the kiddos to play with (old McDonald’s Christmas toys from my childhood, the little people train, the finger puppet Nativity set). The first thing they did was dump them on the floor in the middle of the main walkway. When I asked them to pick up the toys and perhaps take it to their rooms to play with so we could get the rest of the Christmas items up I was met with no response and obvious ignoring from them. So I made myself a little louder to still have no response. So the “Scary Mommy” came out and the Christmas toys were sent downstairs to the basement for the rest of the evening. 

Next my husband and  I were unpacking totes and I found that my favorite tree skirt that we bought for our first year married had been a mouse’s snack last winter. There were holes throughout the whole thing as well as droppings in the box covering everything. GROSS! I was so caught up in my own feelings I took it out on Chad who wasn’t getting it outside quick enough. Again… stealing the joy of the moment. 

Luckily I recognized this and quickly changed my attitude. I sent my family off to pick up a carryout pizza for dinner and sat to collect myself. I told myself this can either be a stress-filled Christmas with me demanding it to be Hallmark movie perfect or it can be a loving Christmas where the focus is on the Ultimate example of love… Jesus! So I decided to choose Jesus, not just this Christmas, but every day of the year. He is what makes my home filled with love and laughter. He is what I want my guests to feel when they enter. He is what our holidays should be centered around. 
Will you let Jesus into your Home for the Holidays? (and perhaps forever….) 

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