(Pretend this was posted actually on Christmas Eve…instead of a few days past)
Christmas Eve is my favorite day of the entire year; it even eclipses my birthday. It is the day before the BIG day, full of anticipation and last minute rushing and overall holiday giddiness. My family has always had very specific traditions for Christmas Eve (more than Christmas Day which pretty much entailed 1) you can’t go downstairs to see the presents until Dad has been down there – and taken 50 million pictures, 2) you have to sing Christmas carols on the stairs which seemed tortuously long before being let down the stairs, and 3) you start with your stocking and then one person gets to open up a present at a time).
Growing up, on Christmas Eve we had breakfast together (if Dad didn’t have to work a little bit in the morning), then we went down to the KSL Broadcast house to donate the money we had saved for Quarters for Christmas. After dropping our change in their donation box, we would head on to visit Christmas Street and Christmas Story Street and go by my Grandpa Brewster’s, finally ending up at my Grandpa Taylor’s for a big Christmas Eve dinner with cousins which included singing and a nativity rendering. I just remember being so excited and dreaming of what gifts I might find under the tree with my cousins. It took forever to get us out of my Grandpa’s house but the uncles and aunts would always say, “Santa’s coming and if you’re not in your bed he will pass your house on by!” and then suddenly we would all be ready to fly out the door and go home to sleep. That was my absolute favorite day and I looked forward to it every year (still do). Once my Grandpa Brewster passed on, I noticed a bit of that Christmas joy had changed. And when my Grandpa Taylor passed on, even more so as growing up I was always so close with my Taylor cousins.
Now that Christmas Eve is just my immediate family, the new tradition is to pick a movie (which is hard to do now with such young kids in tow), go to Christmas Street and Christmas Story Street, and then head to my parents for the big Christmas Eve dinner. This Christmas Eve it was just my parents, Allison, myself and Caden, and the Campbells. Hilary’s family was all in town so they gathered at her grandparents house and Katie and Dave are up in Oregon – still. As much as I love my just my own little family, I have to admit a little sadness in not having those great big Christmas Eve parties I knew so well growing up. But despite the changes that passing years may bring, it will always be my favorite day of the year.