|The stocking were hung...|
Christmas in Florida was rarely cold, so we could enjoy running around in shorts and t-shirts as we drank hot chocolate and looked at lights. Speaking of lights, another tradition we enjoyed was loading up in our grandparents mini-van and driving to Ormond Beach to visit one of the biggest light displays in that area. This family went over the top with their light display, and we loved it!
|Opening presents with my mom. I seem a little confused by the football.|
Our grandmama wasn't the best cook, but she hid it well. She had perfected a few meals which just happened to be our favorites! We could always count on having roast beef, rice-a-roni, green beans and cornbread at least once during our visit.
When Christmas Eve came around, we would get dressed up and attend a Christmas Eve party thrown by some friends and then usually go to the candlelight service at church. Sometime after the service, our parents would pull into town like Santa's sleigh filled with home-baked goodies and gifts. We'd always open one gift that night and then off to bed. My sisters and I would all squeeze into one bed upstairs, discuss the possibilities that the nearby radio tower was Rudolph's nose, and sometimes drift off to sleep while harmonizing to the tune of "Silent Night".
|For several years, our granddaddy dressed up like Santa. My mom still has his old costume.|
I've learned over the years that tradition isn't just doing the same thing every year. It is about loving the same people and celebrating the same timeless message of God's love sent down to earth. No matter where we live or where we find ourselves celebrating the holidays, those are the traditions to which we will hold tightly.