Christmas is such an interesting time post-fire. It's so rooted in tradition, family heirlooms, the past. And yet, for us, that is gone.
The ornaments are all new, with a different kind of significance. We don't think back on generations past because the ornaments they handmade no longer adorn our tree. Rather, we look at several ornaments and think about my mom's generous friends who gathered ornaments for our first Christmas. Each year, I try to add more, though our tree is still quite bare. I'm sure ten years from now, we'll be having to decide which to put up on the tree (especially if school projects have anything to say about it).
We got a great Santa last year, sitting at a table writing his Christmas letters. I haven't found the right spot for him, but this year, he sat on the piano, which worked ok.
The white-glittered JOY letters sit on the red ladder bookcase in our living room and remind us of the first Christmas in our house that wasn't yet complete, a fold-up table and plastic chairs the only furniture inside. Speaking of which, have you picked up your copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul?
After the fire, I re-bought the photo stocking holders from the old house, but they don't work the same now. The stairs are such a great place to hang them. I've found this happens a lot throughout this reacclimating process. I thought I wanted the same things I had in the old house, but they just don't work the same. It's a bit of a struggle letting go of that desire to recreate instead of just doing what works now.
I am having a hard time getting into the Christmas Spirit this year, but I know that Christmas morning this year will be magical. Kellen knows who Santa is, and we read "Twas the Night Before Christmas" nearly every night. He's been practicing Jingle Bells, and as soon as I can get a good video I will post it. He may not FULLY get it this year, but I'm sure that his expression and excitement will be a great moment to treasure.