I want to start this post by saying thank you, Mom. You always made sure that Christmas was magical. Not just "we got what we wanted" magical but real Christmas magic that only kids can appreciate. We would come down stairs or out of our room into a Christmas Wonderland. We had gone to bed the night before with sponge rollers in our hair, Christmas pjs on, and the excitement uncontainable. The four of us would lay in one room, all together (I guess so no one would peek or so that the excitement would be even more uncontrolable), and just could not possibly go to sleep knowing that any minute Santa will be coming down the chimney with what? What will he be leaving me? Will I be getting everything I asked for? Was I good enough this year? What will my siblings be getting? We would look out the window and woosh Santa and his reindeer flew across the sky.
As kids, our bodies knew that it was Christmas morning and we would be up long before the sun. If we were not up before the crack of dawn we would be awoke by a loud "Feliz Navidad!" (even though we have no Hispanic heritage anywhere in our family, hahaha) coming from the loud voice of our dad. He would bust the bedroom door open and yell it again "Fleiz Navidad! Santi Claus came" We would be up in a flash and run as fast as our tired legs could carry us into the living room where Santa had not only piled presents under the tree for four little shining faces, but he had turned our living room into a Christmas Heaven. With candles lit all over the place, beautiful candies in wonderful dishes and jars on the coffee table and fireplace, and all the Christmas lights twinkling. Every year was a Christmas dream that any kid would give their right arm to have.
I will never forget how wonderful Christmas was and the feelings building up in my little body every year, when I first saw the master piece that was Christmas in the living room. When I became a parent my only wish was that I would be able to make Christmas as magical as my mom did. I wanted my kids to enter the living room and remember all those little details just like I do. The candies, the presents, the candles and lights. The excitement all around. In my childhood mind it was Santa that lit all the candles before he left, he filled our stockings, and placed all the candies just where they needed to be. It was always candies that came from a candy store, candies that we did not often see throughout the year, so I thought the elves had made the candies for Santa to leave in everyone's living room with their presents and such. My favorite Christmas candy memory is the raspberry and blackberry candies.
As we get older Christmas gets a little less magical every year, but I want there to be something that even as teenagers and adults my kids won't be able to wait to come home and see what Santa has left in the living room. Maybe Mom made Christmas so magical because she was inspired by a family that lived down the street from her growing up in Austin. She told me how excited they always were. Even as adults all the "kids" came home every year, and would talk about how excited they were that Santa was coming that night. I think she said they would all camp out in the living room, waiting for Santa to leave presents under the tree. Their parents had kept the magic in Christmas all those years.
So tonight run to your Walgreens and grab some extra bags of candies, some candles, and whatever else moves you to make your living room as magical as possible for your kids. Set your alarm to get up before your kids light all the candles, turn on the music, plug in the lights, light a fire if it isn't 80 degrees outside (we do live in Texas...you never know). Have a happy, safe, wonderfully magical Christmas. God Bless.