Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Symmes Family Christmas

Each year, the Symmes' family celebrates Christmas the Saturday after Thanksgiving. It is a tradition that we enjoy very much. It has always consisted of a pitch in, a gift exchange (we always play the white elephant game), and a nice visit with family. And of course, it is not a Symmes' Family Christmas without a visit from Santa Claus.

The week leading up to the party was filled with mixed emotions for Justin and I both. We had many conversations about how hard the night would be without my Dad there. This was a night he loved so much. My Dad and my Uncle Dick “took charge” of the event each year.

Justin and I talked on the way to the party that it felt like Dad should walk in that night wearing his red sweater with his blue corduroys that Mom always laid out for him (he was colored blind). We talked that Dad should be there to tease Michelle when she walked in late, to laugh at Deb’s update with her Dancing With the Stars experience (she is dancing to Bringing Sexy Back), or to tell me he could not wait to see “Action Jackson” crawl (he did show off at the party). I was dreading what the evening would bring without my Dad being a part of one of his favorite nights.

This year the party was hosted by my Uncle Dick and my Aunt Marie. However, the morning of the party Uncle Dick fell and broke his ankle. Before the party even began, Uncle Dick had been rushed to the hospital, had surgery, and was in recovery. Aunt Marie was very gracious and hosted the party at her home anyways. Thanks so much, Marie. Uncle Dick – you were missed!

To my surprise, Justin and I very much enjoyed our night with the Symmes' gang. If there is one thing the Symmes’ are good at…it is laughter. We have a way of using sarcasm to lighten the mood and we are all pros at making fun of each other. It was so nice to be with my Dad’s siblings, his nieces and nephews that he loved so dearly, and all of the spouses who willingly married into this family. :) I told Justin that night that I felt closer to Dad by spending time with people he cared so deeply about.

Since I can remember, Santa Claus has always made a visit to the Symmes' Family Christmas party. I can still remember Santa showing up when I was young. My folks would host the party and I could not believe Santa actually made time to visit my house at a time when he had to be so busy. I remember sitting on his lap in my Dad’s brown Lazy Boy chair telling him everything I wanted for Christmas.

This year, it was Jackson’s turn to sit on Santa’s lap. We asked Santa for another new shiny tooth. In the middle of snapping Jackson’s photo, I stood back and enjoyed the moment. My son was taking part in a family tradition that I cherish dearly.
Jackson loved Santa Claus. Lets hope Santa brings some exciting toys this year!

Michelle, Deb, and I on Santa's lap at the Symmes' Family Christmas Party in 1979 . Apparently, Jackson gets his chubbiness from me!

Thanks so much to my entire family for helping my mom, sisters, and myself through such a tough holiday. Justin, Jackson, and I wish you all a Merry Christmas.

Check out our web albums (listed on the right of the page) for more pictures of the party!

Can’t wait for next year…


Jessy said...

As much as I missed Uncle Mike this year.. Symmes Christmas was made for me by getting to spend time with all of you.

P.S... He would thought the moonshine was pretty funny!

Love you guys, Jessy

deb said...

The picture of us 3 made me bawl!

Love you,