I am a big fan of traditions. I like starting them and I like continuing them. With every passing year, I treasure the repetitious rituals - it's what makes a holiday feel "right" to me.
For Christmas, one of my favored activities growing up (admittedly, I think I was the only child who enjoyed this - or maybe my brother's complete disdain overshadowed my sister's shared joy, I can't be sure), was looking at Christmas lights. Every year, typically after the Christmas Eve service, my family would load up in the van, head to Sonic for milkshakes (because there's nothing like a cold treat while bundling up from the cold . . . apparently) and cruise the neighborhoods, admiring or critiquing the handiwork of others.
Thus, I have been eager to continue the tradition with our own little ones and have been pushing this for the past week. And tonight was the night.
I prepped myself for the dreamy image in my head of a blissful family evening to go quickly awry - it always seems to with toddlers. For our two big kids, who are accustomed to watching a dvd during any trip longer than five minutes, I was particularly concerned.
Apparently, though, Harry Connick, Jr. crooning "Frosty the Snowman" is the exact ingredient required to distract children from the lack of animated characters on the screen before them and entice them to gaze out the windows at the colored, blinking lights. Either that or the "oohs" and "aahs" were simply sympathy admiration given in an attempt to match their mother's exuberance. Either way, I'll take it.
The cries of, "Look, it's the Mommy purple reindeer and the Daddy purple riendeer!" and "It's Santa! He's real and he's looking in our car!" were joy to a Momma's heart (for just one night, I didn't even feel the need to correct him).
And, yes, this evening of family togetherness was brought to you by Sonic, who, as always, provided the snacks.
Coupled with the spontaneous caroling at the dinner table for the past couple of nights (our children are loving "Rudolph, the Red-Nosed Reindeer") and I would say it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.
1063. Family traditions
1064. Lights on the street reminding us of the Light of the world
1065. "Good-bye, Puppy! Have a special day!" said Emmett
1066. An evening of frustration ending with everything working as it should
1067. Plans, all asunder, falling back into place