Christmas is not my favorite holiday. Instead I long to crawl under a rock and stay there until the spring thaw. At the very least, I want to stay home the entire month of December. I really do. I want to stay home, snuggle with my kids, and read a book. I wish that there really was a man in a red suit to deliver presents on Christmas morning so I don't have to go shopping. My brother-in-law calls me Scrooge.
I didn't stay home, though. No, this year we packed up all our kids, all their presents, all our snow/winter gear and went to Idaho. I didn't want to, but I understood that my husband and our children did. It wasn't about me, anyway. Christmas isn't about adults.
We'd driven about 40 minutes when my husband got a call that his cousin had been killed that morning in an avalanche while snowmobiling. We still had a 2 1/2 hour drive. A person thinks during that time.
We entered the house to a somber crowd. Jesse had worked for my husband's brother alongside his other two brothers. We probably knew Jesse least, but I never saw him without a smile on his face. Now I saw pain in everyone's eyes.
And then our kids came in behind us, bounding--their eyes and hearts excited for Christmas and all it's wonders. Being at Grandma and Grandpa's was an added bonus. It took a little time, but I watched everyone pick up their sagging hearts. After all, there was still Christmas to be had.
So we had Christmas. It was better for everyone, I think, because of the kids. It's hard to be too sad, with children around at Christmastime. Of all the years, this one was a good one to be at Grandma and Grandpa Campbell's. We didn't bring anyone lots of gifts. O.K, we didn't bring any gifts. But we brought the kids. I hope it was enough.