Christmas Eve has a different energy now that my kids are older, and it’s a good different. Instead of trying so hard all day to contain their excitement about the gifts that await them in the hours ahead, Louisa, Seb and Elias have been occupied by thoughts about a gift for someone else (well, at least somewhat – I won’t pretend that they haven’t closely inspected the names on the gifts already under the tree). This focus on giving over receiving is due in part to the tradition of Kris Kringle gifts, one of my favorite holiday traditions from my youth that Steve and I have continued with our own kids.
|This is me, eagerly anticipating Christmas in 1969 with my brother, Pete.|
I’m always delighted by the thoughtfulness of the gifts, especially as the kids have grown. Last year, Louisa had my name; she remembered that my mom had made a couple of Wizard of Oz ornaments for me when I was a kid – the Tin Man and the Cowardly Lion – but had never completed the set. So, to my complete surprise last year, Louisa made a Dorothy ornament for me, complete with ruby sequined slippers.
|The handcrafted Dorothy ornament.|
I could write more about my love of Christmas Eve traditions, but frankly, I don’t have the time. I have work to do on my Kris Kringle gift, and I have to prepare for my part in the program.
|A Riggs family Christmas card from the 1950s|