Monday, November 16, 2015

A Christmas Without Ornaments

Photo from Christmas 2014 in the Davis home.
Sign: made by Kenan Hill of  Kitchen 1204

Much like the Starbucks red cups this year, I'm planning for our first Christmas without ornaments.  As a side note, I'm tired of hearing about the Starbucks cups and will just say this one thing. As a Christian, a follower of Jesus, this was my exact reaction when I bought my first Starbucks drink in a red cup this year: "Oh, new red cups!" And then I drank my peppermint mocha and hopped on a plane to DC, and that was the end of my thinking about the red cup (until I had to see posts, ad nauseum, regarding the red cup and how "Christians" are upset about it).

We're toning down our holiday decor this year due to our move that will take place during the holiday season.  Scott and I close on our first home on December 1st and will begin the moving process a week later (in the midst of finals for school!).  I'm anticipating the craziest move yet, and that includes my cross country move to Indiana two years ago.  We will be moving during finals season for school, just days before driving home to North Carolina to spend time with our family for the holidays.  As usual, I'm working Christmas and will be flying back to Indy to work a few shifts, and I've made extensive plans (with myself) to blast Christmas music and watch holiday movies by myself as I unpack items in our new home.  But as for the ornaments, I'm not sure there will be any this year.

I'm one of those weirdos who would already have my Christmas tree up by now if not for our move.  I get so into the decorations, the lights, the ornaments, the music, and the food/drinks.  But this year, we're having a Christmas without ornaments, much like the first Christmas celebrated in a small stable in Bethlehem.  Our Christmas will be humble and small and spent in different states.  While Scott feasts with family back home, I'll eat Chinese food on the Chancey couch after taking care of patients all day in the hospital.  I'll spend Christmas Eve tucking patients into bed before night shift arrives, and on Christmas day I will change dressings on wounds, place IVs for antibiotic therapy, clean up incontinent patients, and smile as I spend the day with people who want to be at home with their families even more than I do.  I'll do business as usual as I remember that inwardly, I'm celebrating the birth of our Savior; outwardly, Christmas will be just like any other day.

I'm remembering this as we celebrate our first Thanksgiving alone, too.  In years past we have been fortunate to fly or drive home for Thanksgiving or even spend it with good friends and their families.  This year, we have a 22 pound turkey in our freezer that will be prepared for just the two of us in our one bedroom apartment.  I'll make stuffing and green bean casserole and apple pie, and I'll sit on the Chancey couch with Scott as I thank the Lord for all He has provided for us.  I think a lack of ornaments is good for me, and I think it will humble me more than I know.  And next year, I'll return to decking the halls the day after Halloween and covering our house in Christmas lights.  But for this year, I'll leave the ornaments packed away and will look to the Cross instead.