Christmas, Simplicity, and Inlaws

By far the most difficult thing to get used to about being part of David’s family has been Christmas.

I come from a very simple (in the good ways) Mennonite family. Christmas at our house was a highly religious occasion, but also a time of quiet lazy days where we spent lots of time together. In terms of gifts we each got a couple things and they were usually very practical things or things we specifically requested.

Fast forward to my first Christmas with David’s very not Mennonite, very not focused on simplicity family. I had never seen so many boxes under a tree, I had never even imagined trees existed with this many presents under it, and had never been expected to do so many things. I’m pretty sure David’s entire family operates with gift giving as their primary love language, Christmas is about showering each other with more presents than you can shake a stick and fitting as many holiday themed activities into the time as any human could manage.

To them it is a beautiful way to spread joy and show love to one another. To me it was 110% overwhelming.
xmas2This year my 9th Christmas with David and for the first time since then I feel like I may have gotten used to it.

The kids had about five times as many presents under the tree as I feel like could possibly be reasonable for any child (David’s family was aided in the gift onslaught by the fact that the kids are the first grandkids on multiple sides and the first great grandchildren as well… they get stuff from LOTS of people) but it didn’t phase me nearly as much as it has in the past, and I can now see it for what it is… an expression of their love and not just a mountain of things to find places for and keep clean and organized. We intentionally had a very calm and quiet December leading up to it for the first time since having children which I think helped as well.

Anyway, I’m considering this development my own personal holiday miracle.

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