In past years, I would be knee-deep in wrapping gifts, prepping food, and tearing my hair on this date, even if I started holiday planning early. It’s the nature of the holiday.
But this year, we are not exchanging gifts nor am I doing a lot of cooking. You’ve read about our plans for Christmas Day dinner, but we’ve also come up with a different idea for gifts. We are giving each other memories.
There are eight of us, and it works like this. I think of a personal memory that I’d like to hold onto for each of the other seven participants, write it down, and seal it in an envelope. For instance, I might remember a certain trip I took with a certain adult son where it was just the two of us. If we don’t remember it, who will? On Christmas Day, we shall open the envelopes as if they were actual presents. Because they are.
We shall read the memories aloud so that everyone present enjoys them; then each family member takes home his or her collection to smile at throughout 2018. Maybe it will become a new tradition.