I remember lying in my bed one Christmas Eve staring at the ceiling with jittery butterflies in my stomach—the aroma of apple pie and English toffee still wafting through the house. Some time around midnight, I finally drifted into a fitful sleep only to awake again at 4:00—still too early, but closer. For some reason, I decided to sing myself to sleep by chanting 4:03. By 4:04, I had woken my older brother and, well,
let's just say all wasn’t calm.
I hated waiting.
The holidays are filled with waiting. Boiling candy on the stove eager for it to reach hard-crack stage—picking at the mashed potatoes when Mom isn’t looking—loading sleds into the van an hour too early—and fiddling with packages under the tree. But I’ve found that the best part of the holiday season happens while waiting.
I love planning events with the family—seeing friends at the store while grabbing secret ingredients—listening to the laughter of children—and basking in the candles’ glow. I smile at kids covered in flour making Parker House rolls, carrot pudding, and apple pie—all family recipes that we’ve passed down for generations. And kids love being included in the mix.
My 11-year-old makes delicious French bread and cookies—by herself. They enjoy writing holiday notes and filling out recipe cards to give as part of a gift. And they love hearing stories in the evening by candlelight. By the time the big day arrives, we’ve been celebrating for weeks.
I love waiting.
We all have different holidays steeped in tradition this time of year. However you choose to celebrate your holiday, be sure to enjoy the anticipation—the in-between time. Listen, laugh, and soak up each moment. That’s where memories are made.
A couple of items to help you make new memories this season:
Being a proud father of 4 daughters has made him man enough to wear pink
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