parenting

Perfectly Imperfect!

It’s the time of year where we spend massive amounts of time with family and friends. I am super excited to be able to use the entire family’s creative skills and make these the most memorable times ever. There’s decorating, cookie baking, gift giving and so much more, I love it all. My family has opted for a non-traditional white tree (it’s been with us a few years) and we never go with the traditional holiday colors which I love. Blues, purples, deep pinks, emerald green, fire red have donned our tree and home since we moved in 7 years ago. Why change the formula, right?! This year the kids request to take over the decorating. It can’t be that hard I mean I’ve mapped it out for them every year they just have to duplicate and VOILA, decorations complete. I’m excited to decorate until our drive in the car to get a few new things to add this year turns into, I don’t like our decorations! What?! I’m confused they represent our personalities. I would learn there that day in the car my children prefer traditional colors (bah-hum-bug!) Then I had to remember it’s not just about me, it’s about the family so off to the store we go…

I have to say I was impressed by some of the pieces they picked out and it was fun to see the excitement in their faces as they go about the store comparing prices, colors, and the look they can agree on. We collect our haul and head home. In my typical takeover fashion I begin putting pieces together and I can see their vision, it may work out. I get a little tap on my arm and I’m escorted to my seat, apparently this year I am to observe and participate as needed. (WOW!) This is torture! I know I’m not the only mom who likes for the look of their home to duplicate a magazine spread. Ornaments are not bunched together, the wreath is hung perfectly this is what brings Christmas cheer right? As I sit grinding my teeth, I’m amused at how take charge the kids are this year. Not everything is where I would put it, but it’s perfect. As they finish decorating my heart is filled with joy, 1. They did not argue while completing this mission, 2. The look of satisfaction on both of their faces made my heart grow three times that day.

To my surprise they had more in store for me. Not only were we decorating but we were building a gingerbread village. This should be interesting! We open the box spread out the parts, look at the box, look at each other, look at the box and get to work. Each one of us is given a house to complete for the village. Have you ever put together a gingerbread house? It’s messy, well at least for us. There’s mounds of icing and candy pieces that don’t look that appetizing everywhere. We each take a stab at creating our masterpieces, some did better than others, while others just gave up and licked icing and ate gingerbread. Our houses look nothing like what’s on the box. As I try to piece together the village I look at both my children and they are happy, laughing, and there are no electronics in sight. We are actually spending time, just us. It’s a mother’s dream.

Although my home doesn’t look like a magazine spread and our village is half eaten and loop-sided, I’m fine with everything being perfectly imperfect. If I would have spent time trying to get everything just right I would have missed out on just being present. I’m thankful my children dared to be traditional, the gift of their time and attention and thoughtfulness will go a long way this season.

What are your holiday traditions? Have you ever tried switching things up?

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