Big families rule. There is always something going on, people around to share experiences, love, support, and laughter, and sometimes tears. I think some of the best things that come from families, both big and small, are the weird traditions that surround the holidays.
When I was approaching my teen years, I bought a tape (no CDs then) called “A Reggae Christmas.” I then proceeded to play it constantly. I did it to be mildly obnoxious, but my family turned it around on me. Every year when we would drive deep into the Connecticut woods to chop down a Christmas tree, my parents would take my tape and play it during the entire ride.
Fast forward 20 years. My family is spread to the far winds. Our 40 person Christmases are now only fond memories. My little family and I are trying to make our own traditions.
One of the aspects of living in Buffalo that I lament on a semi-regular basis is the fact that I have no friends of my own. In the two years since we moved here, I have met less than a dozen people. I do not, and have never worked in the city. I have three small children and two jobs. It puts a damper on any hopes for normal socialization.
None of this matters.
Take a look at the family that surrounds me, that has welcomed me, that has included me. I love you all more than words.
Here’s to many, many more Christmas trees.