Monday, December 15


Saturday was December 13th. Every year for the past 25 years or so our family has celebrated Santa Lucia Day,the 13th of December. I began this tradition when my kids were very young in hopes to instill in them the 'magic' of serving others and a way to reach out to people who didn't celebrate Christ's birth. Each year I would introduce a new cookie that would go along with a Christmas tradition and we would focus on the meaning and background of that tradition. Everything was done by candlelight and that made the 'magic' of the day memorable.

It became an overwhelming task as the cookies began stacking up and the kids invited their friends over for our Santa Lucia 'feast'. Nonetheless, I enjoyed the kids' involvement and anticipation even when they were in college and out of the house. I looked forward to meeting their friends and loved having a venue that would encourage them to share with others.

Last week, my niece borrowed my Santa Lucia scrapbooks. Her 7 year old daughter needed to share a custom with her 1st grade class, so my niece wanted more info on how we celebrated, but didn't want to get as elaborate as my celebration had gotten. The reason for this posting is to share about her telephone call she made to me Friday night:

"Barb, you did this 'Santa Lucia thing' different every year! I think I see some possibility in doing this if I don't have to be so rigid in tradition."

When talking about this tradition with her earlier, I had emphasized the years that things went smoothly. I didn't think she needed to hear all the times I was frustrated and disappointed. I didn't think she needed to hear about the times I cried to my husband that my plans weren't coming together.

After talking with her, I realized it was because of my shortcomings that she decided she could take on this celebration. She realized she could make it as big or as small as she wanted to, depending on what each year looked like.

Too often we put our best foot forward, trying to make everything look like a success. Success comes in trying. meant to be special, not perfect. I encourage you to continue to try different celebrations and make the most of them every year. That's what will make memories and that is what will turn a celebration into a tradition that will fit your family.

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