With Thanksgiving next week and Christmas right on it’s tail, the kids want Christmas music. I have always lived by a strict rule of no Christmas music until after Thanksgiving. It’s just not right, in my mind. I think this is what my parents always said, so naturally, I must pass the information down to my own offspring. But now that they’re getting older, they don’t mind me like they used to. These little stinkers have their own way of thinking and their own ideas about when Christmas music should be listened to. According to them—the time is now. And unfortunately, Andy feels the same way they do, so it’s me against them all.

I fought it for the first little bit last week, but eventually succumbed, only when the kids are home from school and put the music on. Except for today when I played Motown Christmas while I mopped the floor. That was the record we always put on when we decorated our tree growing up. I broke my rule. The Christmas excitement welled up inside me as I looked forward to arguing about which tree we should get and opening up the Christmas boxes of decorations and ornaments, having to re-glue the broken ones from the year before. I confess; I enjoyed it. Don’t tell the kids.
I don’t know why I feel that I must stick to this tradition I’ve held onto for so long. There’s not really a great explanation, but I will leave you with a quote from a dear friend that I believe might shed some light.
“Traditions aren’t meant to be comfortable. They’re meant to be kept.”
-Elizabeth Sinclair

First of many trick or treats

We broke a tradition this year for Halloween. I’m talking a 13-year-long streak of attending the same harvest party every year. Our kids have never seen a need to go trick or treating. Why would they want to walk outside in the cold rain, knocking on strangers doors, asking for candy, when they could go to church, play games inside a warm building and get all the candy their little hearts desire?

But this year has been a year of many firsts since starting our own church. So we invited everyone from church to come to our house for dinner and then a group went trick-or-treating, while a group of us stayed behind and passed out candy to the 35 Elsa’s and the few kids who chose a different costume.

I’ve got to say, it did feel weird not working all day at the church to set up for the harvest party. And the thought of even saying we were going trick-or-treating was foreign to me. But the night was great fun. Our kids found new joy in actually trick-or-treating and there was more than enough candy to go around. New traditions are good.

Dorothy, Elvis, and an added kid to make Rock, Paper, and Scissors complete.
Only Judah would choose to organize his candy in a backgammon case.

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