As you can guess by the title of this post, I’m Jewish. I was born and raised Jewish, had the Bat Mitzvah, attended Hebrew School, went to Shabbat services…. But, I married a gentile. My husband is half Jewish, half Christian, but he was brought up Christian. So, we created a family that celebrates both and introduces many holidays to the kids lives.
We have always gone up north to my MIL’s house for Christmas. She has the cookies waiting for us, the tree is fresh, the stockings are hung, the meals are planned, and a birthday cake for Jesus. Well, this year we decided it would be nice to stay home and it just so happens that my MIL is going to come down here to celebrate with us. Now the pressure is on to create a perfect Christmas for her, my husband, and the kids.
But, this is all new to me. I don’t know what to do. We have a fake christmas tree, all the ornaments that were passed down to my husband and new ones for the kiddos, our lawn has the lit up Santa and reindeer and snowman, and the stockings are hung using 3M hooks on the wall (no fireplace). It sounds like I have it together but the meals and the activities leading up to Christmas is what scares me. I created a list for my Christmas dinner:
- A veggie
- some starch, whether it’s potatoes or mac and cheese
What else do I need?
I have no idea and even looked on Pinterest for ideas. My mom is coming and joining us for Christmas dinner and she is bringing the traditional Hanukkah meal which is brisket. I also thought it would be nice to finally make my latkes since I didn’t have a chance to make them this Hanukkah. Do you think this is good? Am I living up to what I see on Pinterest, in the magazines, on tv? There is so much pressure to have this amazing Christmas experience.
What makes a special Christmas and Hanukkah experience?
To me, it’s about being with your loved ones. Enjoying your time together and seeing the wonder of the holidays through the eyes of the children. Every morning the kids wake up and wonder where the elf is hiding. They take pleasure in lighting the candles of the menorah, singing the songs and then opening their advent calendar and eating the tiny little chocolate (Thanks Trader Joe’s for the best .99 cent advent calendar).
I need to take a deep breath and not get wrapped up in what makes things so perfect and just listen to my daughter when she recites Daniel Tiger:
Take a deep breath, and count to 4.