Friday, December 26, 2014

Home for the Holidays by Ginny Baird

There’s no place like home for the holidays… That's how the popular song goes. It stirs up images of twinkling lights, inviting hearths, and families gathered around bountiful tables. When I was a younger woman, I used to travel to my parents’ home for Christmas. As I grew older, married and established a family of my own, we started spending the holiday at our house and then taking the children to see grandparents either after Christmas or at other times during the year.

Establishing traditions has always been important to me. In our house, we took the kids to the early Christmas Eve service then came home to a turkey dinner with all the trimmings. It was fun to dine by candlelight while still in our fancy clothes, and the children enjoyed the elegance of it all. There was also the special aura that surrounded the evening in believing that Santa and his reindeer team were on their way. As a teaser for Christmas morning, each child got to open one present from under the tree. Then, it was off to bed for the wee ones, and I had the happy knowledge I wouldn’t have to cook the next day. Our big meal had been done, and on Christmas we would snack on leftovers.

Fast forward several years later, and many of those early traditions have changed. I’m now on a second marriage with a wonderful husband and have a beautiful blended family. While our primary meal together is still on Christmas Eve, it no longer mainly consists of turkey. With vegetarians and others with dietary restrictions in our group, we’ve had to diversify the menu, and our horizons have broadened because of this. Yet, one important thing remains constant: our unified focus on family. There’s nothing like being together with the ones you love, particularly when some of those people live far away, and can only come home sometimes. This year, we were blessed to have all six kids (and a significant other) with us at Christmas. Although one child could only be here for twenty-four hours, we were overjoyed to have everyone together for at least a little while.

Where do you make your “home” during the holidays? Whether at your own place, or with family or friends, I hope you had a very special Christmas, and that you’ll enjoy a fantastic and fruitful New Year. Best wishes and blessings for a happy 2015!

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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Ginny Baird writes sweet romance and laugh-out-loud romantic comedy. Her newest release is The Calendar Brides, a heartwarming story about the power of love, the dedication of family, and the realization of dreams. The Calendar Brides is already in paperback. The ebook, which releases on January 1st, can be Pre-Ordered at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Kobo and Smashwords. Win an autographed copy at Goodreads. (Contest ends January 10th.)

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