to gather, together
Ahhh the holidays are here! I love getting together, especially hosting, but more than that I love a time when everyone clears their schedule to gather! When we gather, we intentionally look forward to, can't wait to catch up, and leave feeling like "why don't we do this more often" but ultimately know that when we see each other again we will pick right up where we left off! I know in any situation good or bad, I can call an uncle, even if we didn't chat at Christmas the last two years, because he showed up and made a point to be together with family. The holidays, for our home is a time that we are reminded of the built in support team we have, and this is the time of year we give thanks for that on repeat. Our home is not magazine worthy, but none of that matters when we are together and gathering.
This year looked a little different than years past! 2021, the first year with my great-grandmas china for thanksgiving, the year I didn't decorate for Christmas, and we cut back on gifts!
I have been waiting the moment to inherit china for years. There is something so special about setting the table with my children and having a from scratch thanksgiving meal. I enjoy the memories that these dishes hold and will create for years ahead. Somewhere in the midst of life these little treasures have gone to the wayside and have been forgotten about. Now, I'm not saying I think life should be like it was "back then" but I do believe that we should find some things of the past that we can and want to bring into our children's life. Having my great-grandmas china to use for thanksgiving has been a heart-filled gift that, for us, will be a reminder to slow down, enjoy each other and the moments around the table. Not to mention the manners that come along with using such precious dishes... priceless!
This next part of changing pace may come as a shock, and even offend the hardcore Christmas folk... I didn't decorate for Christmas! I know, I know, am I feeling ok? YES! I had intentions of setting all our loved Christmas items throughout our house at the beginning of November. Then, we put the tree up, and I realized this year, that was enough. Living small has come with give and take, this year I felt if I brought out our Christmas totes I would feel too closed in and that my house was never clean. Ultimately leading to the decision that the Christmas decor would stay put away this year.
Did I miss seeing the handmade Santas cover our house? Absolutely! Yet, for this year, it was the right choice. Instead, I spent my focus on wrapping presents and making custom gift tags. Something that usually gets left for last or for on the way to Christmas gatherings! This meant that the tree was the star of our home and I found myself starring at each ornament a little closer, saying quick prayers about those who had given the ornaments, and how thankful I was to be staying home, caring for our home, children, and growing business.
The house didn't look festive, but my heart and mind were more festive than ever!
Because I didn't have time dedicated to decorating I had time to finally follow through on gifts. In years past I always thought of neat gift ideas and things I really wanted to get others, yet I could never follow through. This year was different. I had ideas in my mind for everyone on our list, pretty much since March, and I finally did it, I followed through and gave everyone exactly what I had in mind! & yup! Christmas really was that much sweeter! We spent half what we usually do, and those that we spent a little extra on, it didn't matter or bother me as much. I have to think the reasoning behind not feeling guilty is because the gifts were special and thought out. Not some last minute, well I suppose I could get this and hope they like it, kind of thing!
Overall, through the changes of the 2021 holiday season there are things I will keep doing and make a note of for next year, and some changes that I hope change back to how we used to do them. & I think I am finding, in my ripe age of 31, that is the joy of the holidays! Learn as you go, take the heart-happy traditions, embrace the "it's just for this season of life" moments, and most importantly gather together with those you love.
our hygge home