Monday, December 26, 2011

tradition or habit?

Traditionally, Santa leaves presents for the boys on Christmas morning. It's habit that we sit in front of the Christmas tree to open all of our gifts. This year I didn't do the Christmas tree thing. Santa still left some presents - we just opened them in front of the fireplace instead of a tree. And instead of sitting on a cold, hard concrete floor, I sat in a comfy armchair.

Baby Jus asked for an xbox. It was the only thing he really wanted. I warned him ahead of time that we were cutting back this year, and he would not be getting something so expensive. And honestly, he was very understanding. So much so that I was determined that he get the dang xbox even if he didn't get any other gifts. But I never let him have even the slightest idea that he might get his wish. So I shopped and shopped hoping for a great deal. Because surprises on Christmas are a tradition.

With the old habit of sitting in front of the tree, I might have gotten a better picture of the grin, but I loved the quiet grin that I caught just as he opened the first box. I stepped out of the room for just a second, and he grabbed the small box with the extra controller in it. When he saw what it was he knew that the big box would be the new gaming system. And he didn't say a word; he just gave me a knowing smile and went on opening presents, saving the big box for last.

When the boys were younger, I gave them new pj's on Christmas so that they would look cute in the Christmas morning pictures. I so wanted the tradition of nice color coordinated Christmas pictures. I gave up on that dream when I realized that Big Boy had developed a habit of coming out of his room in whatever he wanted and then adding clothing as he opened his gifts.

I hadn't realized until this year when I loaded the pics from Christmas night, that it is a habit that he learned from watching his father.

I mentioned earlier that I don't like traditions to be changed. For years, it has been tradition that we go to my momma's for Christmas Eve, then have lunch on Christmas day at Lovey's mom's. But this year our nursing SIL works weekend option. So we had to considered just what was habit and what was the real tradition. For me, it was an easy choice - eating at particular time is a habit; having everyone there is a tradition. Change the habit; not the tradition. And I am so glad that we did. We even lined up for a family picture.

I had never used the timer function on my camera, so I had to play with it a bit.

After everyone lined up, and I knew how to work the timer, I jumped in let it click and then told everyone to hold positions so that I could check to see that everyone still had their heads and no eyes were closed.  Right away I noticed a problem: I looked like a white elephant in a room full of tiny people.

So we had to redo. Because I had to find a way to blend in with these tiny people.

I scooted in a bit more, but then Baby Jus was just a floating head. And Chan was having to squat so that his head wasn't blocking someone.

Better? Chan wasn't happy that he had to sit on the floor, and my boobs seem to be wrapped around Lovey's neck and resting on his shoulders.

The camera was resting on a bean bag Santa that I found sitting on Nannie's table. Apparently it was settling back just a little more with each picture, notice that in each one the fan gets more and more prominent. I was so worried about camouflaging myself in a room full of tiny people that I didn't pay any attention to the damn fan creeping into the pictures.

I think that we'll make a family picture a new tradition. And I'll make it a habit to wear black to Christmas so that I can blend in better.


  1. I love traditions. This year we didnt follow them like normal and I could tell that "something" was missing. Next year traditions must resume!

  2. oh but i did love your santa tracks through the house - cute!

  3. Oh, my gosh! I love reading your blogs! You crack me up, and we have so much in common.

  4. thanks nannette. it was good to visit with you for a few minutes yesterday.