Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Reason for the Season

 Sometimes I get so stressed out about the holidays. I feel like an awful mom because I'm so busy just caring for my girls right now that I haven't done a lot of extra stuff. Especially when I get on Facebook or twitter or blogs and see what other moms are doing. I don't have a fun advent calendar or do special things every day.  We don't have the Elf on a Shelf and we haven't been to look at lights much or to visit Santa or really much of anything I would LOVE to do.
A lot is just because I think Harper is too young to understand most of those things and a lot of it is because Hollis keeps me so busy and she has meltdowns to go to bed by 6:30 every night so it's not possible for us to get out at night right now much.
I know there will be years for us to make "Stamps traditions" but this has just not been the year for it.

I also SO badly want my girls to know more than anything that Christmas is more about giving than "getting".  And not just Christmas - but all year long.  Every time we leave a store - I try to let Harper put coins in the Salvation Army bucket and I explain in simple words why we are doing that. I took her shopping with me to buy toys for our church's Christmas store we do to provide gifts for 600 families in our town that couldn't afford Christmas. I tried to explain that to her but it's so hard to explain to a 2 year old.  I want the girls to know about Compassion and things like Arkansas Baptist Children's Home so they will be excited when we give things to them instead of ourselves one day.
But this year is just not the year yet. I'm trying to plant seeds but I know one day they will understand and I hope and pray they will have the spirit of giving.
I was having a day where I just felt overwhelmed and bad that maybe I wasn't making Christmas special enough and we were going somewhere and drove by a nativity scene and Harper suddenly said "BABY JESUS!!!" and then she said "Harper likes Jesus".
And with tears in my eyes I realized that was it. Everything else is just fluff - she knew the most important thing about Christmas. And I wanted so badly to tell her "Oh baby - you have NO idea just how much Jesus loves you! One day you will begin to understand the depth and breadth and height of just how much He loves you and you will find out He died on the cross for YOU! One day you will realize that He is the ONLY thing that matters".  But for now I just love that when she prays that she says "Thank you Jesus for everything".  I love that she can't go to sleep at night unless we sing "Jesus loves me".  If THAT is our only tradition - if Jesus is the only thing we think about and talk about during Christmas - then it's more than enough.  After all - that is the reason that we celebrate at all!
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.  John 1:14

So maybe I'm not the worst mother after all...........  :-)

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