I'm a firm believer that home is where your family is, and not just a a set of walls and a roof. Yet at the same time, there is a lot of memories that have soaked into these four walls and roof that can't be moved elsewhere.
With our upcoming move to Washington next year, it dawned on me earlier this week that this would be the last Christmas we have at our current house. Christmas is my favorite holiday of them all, so I always have a little extra gusto and energy going into this holiday and the memories are that more potent.
I know the most important part of Christmas is celebrating Christ's birth with my family. That can be done anywhere. I have the memories of listening to my girls' sing carols. I have the memories of their first "Walk through Bethlehem" where they got a glimpse into the time and place the world changed. I have the memories of wonderment and joy as they ask questions about Santa and track him online throughout the day. Oh yeah, and there's the Polar express. I have the memories of sitting with Jen and just enjoying that moment of peace with the family as everybody settles in for a day of rest. These memories apply anytime and anywhere.
I also feel the pull of the house in which a lot of these memories were made. I have the memory of looking out onto our deck having our first full fledged white Christmas. I have the memory when my girls had the first white Christmas they can remember. How many years now have I put lights up on the roof? All 10 come to think of it, and there's a pattern and a routine that I rather enjoy that goes away. That same hallway will no longer have a coating in wrapping paper [though Jen might be happy about that one 8^D]. There are smells and touches and sounds that go away.
So this is a "last Christmas" of sorts. I'm mindful of the memories tied to this location and time and how special they are. But I'm also excited for the Christmases to come. There is a new roof (out there somewhere) that will make my acquaintance to share LED C9 bulbs with. I'm excited for the continued memories, and songs, and cookies [oh my yes!] and the crazy new things and that will happen somewhere 3 states away.