Sunday, December 20, 2009

Last Weekend Before Christmas

It's nearly here!

My favorite time of year. The family, the food, the gifts, the parties - and most importantly the celebration of Christ's Birth. I am definitely a lover of all things Christmas. The music and seasonal decorations are two of my favorites. I remember back in Australia, every year we'd go to the park and sing Christmas Carols by candlelight. It was a yearly tradition.

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Growing up, my parents always made Christmas an elaborate affair for us. Every year they woke up early and ate some of the cookies that we'd left for Santa, and drank the milk... but on top of that, one year they scraped the freezer and put the frost outside in the shape of sled tracks and footprints leading up to the door. Growing up in Australia, snow was something we never saw, so it was such an exciting surprise for us to see Santa's tracks on Christmas morning.

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Then after opening all the gifts, we'd have an open house, and people would stop by all day for food and laughter. My parents still do this at their home in California. Every year, they open their house to anyone without a place to go for Christmas. Some years there has been as many as 60 people come throughout the day. It's always a full house, and people leave with full hearts - exactly what Christmas is about.

What are some of your favorite Christmas memories?

(PS - the winner of the Koo & Poppet Giveaway is Lily. Hooray!)
(PPS - Have a Merry Christmas everyone! I will be back to Blogland January 5th).

27 comments:

Megara said...

hi! i love the idea of a christmas open house. i have many friends here in vancouver who can't afford to fly home to visit their families over christmas, and i almost wish i was staying in town over the holidays to do the same! i know as soon as i start having christmas at my own house (instead of heading to visit parents & in-laws) i'll start a similar tradition of my own.

Kaye Prince said...

One of my favourite things is that on Christmas eve my Mum and I watch White Christmas while eating snack foods and appetizers all night instead of dinner. It's pretty great! I also love the fact that I still get a "Santa present" on Christmas morning!

Nicole Marie said...

oh my gosh that's the cutest thing your parents did!

Nicole Marie said...

ps. i know this is last minute but i might might be in socal on january 3rd. thats the blogger meet up right??
will you email me the info if there's still room for me??
nikymarie@gmail.com

pixelhazard said...

Oh what a lovely idea. I'm pretty sure if we did that all the enighbour hood kids would just try and skate board through our house

I'm so glad the spirit of christmas is still alive

Little Miss Tiara said...

Although I don't celebrate christmas, I always love how all things turn green, red and white when December is nearing. I have to admit I even love the christmas songs, haha...

I love how we Indonesian make some fake snows (because we don't have winter here) and makes everything white... haha... <3

Meghan said...

I love the concept of an open house - what a generous idea. My favorite memories? Sitting around in our PJ's on Christmas morning, drinking tea, opening gifts - and just talking. It's when everyone is most relaxed and happy:)

Vanessa said...

I didn't know you used to live in Australia! I must have missed that. This is my favorite week of the year, too. We have a bunch of traditions, but my favorites are my parents glögg party (glogg is a Swedish mulled wine) every Saturday before Christmas, Christmas Eve dinner with family friends, morning services at our Swedish church, and a new tradition: Charades on Christmas day!

Lovely Scribbles said...

It sounds like you have wonderful memories of Christmas. :) I love everything about this time of year, and like you, it strikes the very core of my heart remembering Christ's birth. Every year I would wake Christmas morning to gifts from Santa and our stockings under the tree. Then my four brothers and my mom would pile on the couch while my dad read us the story of Christ's birth from the Bible, which he still does to this day. The only thing that has changed is that our family has grown even larger!

Kristin said...

What beautiful traditions! We always have cocktails and hors d'oeurves on Christmas Eve. It's something I look forward to all year long!

Paula said...

such wonderful traditions:) As a little girl, Nana would take us around the neighborhood on Christmas Eve carolling at all our neighbors...oh I wish I could go back there!
thanks for sharing Dionne:)
a very merry christmas to you & yours!
paula:)

Caroline said...

What great stories!! I visited Australia in August and absolutely fell in love. Happy Holidays to you and happy blogging... xo!!

Dash said...

hey dionne! meerry christmas! open houses are a tradition in my country, everyone has them!! they are uber fun, arent they??:):) the spirit of sharing is truly alive in an open house.

also, have mailed out the christmas cards, hope u get yours soon! btw, scrapped the homemade card idea after a few failed attempts!

avant garde said...

great post about your family and their traditions and open house warmth. funny but one of my favorite memories, and photos of me, was when i was about 12 (i think) and i received my first pair of levis. now, i am 42 and back then, well, levis were the bomb, everyone had a pair except me. so one christmas there they were, chocolate brown courdoroy levis, authentic levis! and the photo of my face opening them, it's sheer happiness. i know, funny :)

Carol said...

Merry Christmas to you too! Have a great break! :)

sweetwilliam said...

Hope you have a restful, joyful Christmas, full of laughs. I'm sure you will come back and make your blog totally on fire for 2010!

LENORENEVERMORE said...

Love that idea!
May the JOY be yours always~ Merry Christmas* dear~

Monica said...

Hi Dionne, Just stopping by to wish you and your hubby have a merry Christmas.

Torie Jayne said...

Thank you for all your lovely comments on my blog, May the happiness of the holiday season be yours today and always x

Gaia said...

Hi Darling, I hope you are having a great time in California... My fav memories are about my dad and all my Christmas morning with my family!

I love everything about christmas... but you already know it!

Love

Gaia

Rebecca said...

happy, happy holidays!

my parents use to go all out too...but i'd have to say my favorite holiday memory by far is from easter. my parents let me camp in my two older brothers room. in the middle of the night the easter bunny (aka mom dressed in full easter bunny suit) came into the room and was being silly...trying to put on way too little shirts, etc. i remember pulling the covers up to just below my eyes and staring in utter amazement!

i am most excited about being a parent to bring the magic back to the holidays:)

Phoenix said...

Beautiful photos! I hope you had a very merry Christmas and I will meet you in just a few days :)

Gaia said...

HAPPY NEW YEAR! I HOPE TO HEAR FROM YOU SOON!

simplesong said...

hope you had a wonderful christmas + happy new year to you, dionne! xoxo.

Maki said...

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year Luv!!!!

I miss you :)

xoxo

SOPHIE WEARS said...

hello nice blog, i hope you had a GREAT start of the year! cheers :D

glauren5 said...

I was 10 and my mother had just lost her job. I remember her saying not to expect too much on Christmas morning and I didn't, but I remember being the happiest I had ever been as a child on that Christmas morning. My new ice skates and emerald green sweater made me feel like the luckiest girl on the block. =)