Friday, December 04, 2009

The Friday Five Plus Five

This week's Friday Five:
Five things that have changed about Christmas since I was a kid:
1. How soon Christmas season starts. Seems like it's earlier every year.
2. The fact that somehow Christmas is a dirty word, and we're supposed to say Happy Holidays instead.
3. L.E.D. lights. So cool.
4. Expectations for what constitutes a successful holiday. Big gifts, big Christmas Card list, busy schedules.
5. The after Thanksgiving sales that used to start at 8 am now start at 3 am, and people are injured in the stampedes.
HOWEVER, since I don't want the holiday season to begin on a downer:
There are many things that are the same about Christmas since when I was a kid.
1. The decorating of the house on the weekend after Thanksgiving.
2. All the anticipation and the keeping of happy little secrets.
3. That the Christmas Eve service is my favorite church service of the year.
4. Hoping it snows, at least for Christmas.
5. How little sleep I get the night before and getting up early on Christmas morning.

So, tell me one thing you've noticed that's different about Christmas, and one thing that is just the same.


  1. I don't know what's up with the Happy Holidays either. Sheesh.

    Different? I'm an adult now. LOL
    Same? The smell of the tree, the joy of the morning. Even if I don't get presents, it's wonderful to see my kids get them. (I do get presents, btw, but if I didn't I would still be happy)

  2. One thing that's changed for me is that I've focused more on advent and what all of our traditions mean, where they've come from, and really pointing my children back to Christ in all the things we're doing (or most!).

    Yes, I think I've personally made Christmas a bigger deal than maybe it should be. I've started SO many traditions around the holiday that it's become a BIG deal to my children. I think back to the Puritans who rejected Christmas altogether, and in some ways I wonder if as a culture we've lost the simple beauty of the season with all our "traditions."

  3. Christmas decorations still go up around Halloween, which is ridiculously early (but secretly, I sort of like it)

    And what's different? having to share the holidays with my hubby's family. It's fun though!

  4. Different: My mom always wanted decorations that matched... that looked pretty. Any of our "wierd" homemade decorations were descreetly put to the side of the tree or towards the back. Instead of red and green, our tree was mauve and blue. YUCK!

    My tree? Red and silver, with some fun greens mixed in. We have a whole tree upstairs (a fake one) that the kids decorate however they please, including all their homemade ornaments. But regardless... my house is CHRISTMASY with tons of lights... and tons of reds and greens!

    Same: We get a real tree EVERY year... just like we always have! SO very much the same:-)

  5. We're in synch on this topic. I blogged the grincy side this week. LOL Things that haven't changed? The Christmas program at The Young One's school. The children's voices are just beautiful. The band is awesome. They sing real Christmas carols, secular and religious. And the highlight is the audience participation of Handel's Hallelujah Chorus.

  6. Forgot to add that's the beauty of a parochial school. It's Christmas. That hasn't changed in the 40 years since I attended.

  7. Ohhhh....the season is definitely longer now that I'm an adult. Too many years in retail alerted me to the fact that the "shopping season"--not necessarily Christmas, imo--lasts for a full 3.5 months.

    I love the anticipation of celebrating Jesus!

  8. Different: I don't make those green wreaths that made our hands all sticky as kids. Corn flakes, red hots, green dye, melted know...

    The same: The dog still gets into the goodies Santa hid for the advent.

    Merry Christmas!
    ~ Wendy

  9. The whole Seasons Greetings thing is my least favorite change.

    Another difference for me, but this one I love-that now I celebrate Jesus and not Santa.

    What's the same? I love the secrets and whispering. Lots of love going around.

  10. Different? About 15 years ago, we decided to have a manger in the house instead of a tree. We usually try to make a new one every year with the kids. We've used many different building materials....logs, bricks, sticks, lathe, horse weed (giant ragweed, etc.

    Same? I still enjoy making homemade candies like my mom always made at Christmas time.

  11. One thing that has changed is that last year we only had a table top tree. Staying the same, blue Christmas lights.

  12. One difference is how it's so much busier. Having to juggle in-laws and extended family. Sometimes it makes it harder to enjoy the true meaning behind Christmas.

    What's still the same? The magic of it all. It may not strike me as much as it used to when I was a kid but there are still those times when I can stand completely still in front of the Christmas tree, with snow falling in the window behind it, and smile.

  13. One thing that has changed is my glee at waking up at five in the morning!

    One thing that has stayed the same cherishing the smiles and squeals on Christmas morning.

  14. Oh, I don't like that so many people look at "Merry Christmas" as a dirty phrase. How sad.

    We use an artificial tree now, but when I was little, we always cut down a tree. I loved the smells of it.

    Have a wonderful weekend!

  15. Hi, all!

    I've loved hearing about your Christmas experiences.

    Since it is snowing here, it makes me feel more like it should be Christmas time.

  16. I make sure I say Merry Christmas. And we take a Christmas break from our homeschool, NOT a winter break!

    Different? As an adult, the time and the shopping days go SO fast. When I was a kid, Christmas seemed to take forever to get here.

    Same? I still want it to snow on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day and I still have to run outside to catch the first snowflakes of the season on my tongue. I'm not sure I'll ever outgrow that! =)

  17. My parents weren't Christian so as a child my Christmas had no spiritual focus except what was gleaned by osmosis from the popular Carols. So that all changed.

    What's the same are the fresh pine trees cut on our own property, the magic of white "fairy" lights, the whispers, and homemade ornaments, wreaths and garlands.

    Helping to make the holidays into holy days for our children and grandchildren is such a joy!