Honestly, truthfully I don't really love this time of year...like I used to. It used to be my mami's favorite holiday. That says a lot because she really liked all of them, mostly because it meant we would all get together. I remember the days I used to drive up to my parents' home in Florida. She would literally, physically run to the driveway. She would be screaming with excitement. Her face would be so lit up with love and happiness. I don't think an average queen gets that type of welcome. I actually believe God must of made some type of error, giving me that kind of mom. I'm not sure I ever deserved her. I will say with every small and large act she taught me to be just a little nicer, a bit more patient, and through some sort of osmosis be more forgiving than my DNA was made with. One year she decided I would just LOVE to collect Santa Claus figurines. I am giggling now, thinking about how content she looked while we searched for some, through thrift stores and small town antique shops. Yup! Me, the ethnic chic perusing through all kinds of old items in search of fat, white men figurines ha ha ha!!! Each year we would find one and I would add it to the decor. During those years my house transformed into a winter wonderland. I had each room filled with Christmas decor. Even the living room was complete with Pier I trinkets and seasonal children's books. We always had at least 2 Christmas trees. We also had a small nativity scene and then the most beautiful one from Peru. I loved that one. She brought it all the way from Peru. The pieces were perfectly made. She carried it on her lap that year. Yeah I know what you are thinking, she was that kind of awesome. Now that she's been gone for 5 years, it's just not the same. Last year was the first year I really made any effort about getting some decor up around the house. This year I was back to "not so much"...but my youngest son, the only left at home said one morning as I drove him to school, "So mom when are we putting our tree and lights up?", as he turned our GPB station down. I smiled at him and said, "This weekend Biscuit". (That's his nickname). So we did. It's not the same but a little here and there helps the healing process. Work's been pretty good too. The teachers are super sweet and bring gifts and yummy food. One team collected toys for a church that supports our school. That was my favorite part! I love giving back, my mom did too. I don't think she ever went a month without giving or doing something meaningful for the less fortunate. I make it a scheduled visit to Goodwill, where I donate anything and everything we haven't used in 6 months to a year. I learned that from her too.
There's 5 days left until Christmas. We always celebrate the night before. I have purchased 2 gifts so tomorrow that's my goal. Happy shopping everyone! I hope you absorb all of the happiness of the holiday and love on all of those in your tribe that love you all year long.