It's now nine days post Belize and I owe the world a blog post of epic proportions! That post, however, will have to wait until the husband uploads the 329843948 pictures we took.
(Seriously. We put an 8 gig memory card into that poor camera and took pictures of basically everything.)
This post sees us back in Port Moody after a quiet, low key, but wonderful Christmas with the husband, the brother and the parents in Nanoose Bay, on Vancouver Island. Please forgive the saccharine nature of this musing - I'm overly full of love and sugar at the time of posting!
For various reasons, this visit had me thinking a lot about family.
I come from a small and close family. There are two kids, one mom, a step dad and a scattering of aunts, uncles and cousins that live in different corners of the earth. The four of us have been through some very hard, trying times. These situations could have done one of two things - we could have been torn completely apart, or we could have grown much closer and forged deeper bonds.
Luckily for me, the hard times drew all of us into the safe harbor of the family. We learned to rely on one another and I think we came out of these situations knowing a new definition for the world "love".
Now that both Mike and I are grown ups, this bond we share with each other and with our parents is even stronger and important to all of us.
There are some tense times in my family right now and, just as before, it's drawn us into a tighter, more cohesive unit.
And, so, this Christmas was less about gifts and presents and more about re-affirming the love we all share.
It sounds trite and cliche, but Christmas, to me, is about family and love and the familiarity of traditions that have lasted for years and years.
Of course, there is always room for more traditions as our family grows to include more loved ones (like my husband and Mike's girlfriend).
This was a pensive and thoughtful holiday for me and it allowed me the opportunity to self-reflect.
So, amongst the wrapping and stockings and carols, I realized that it's the closeness and love I share with my family that's the true gift.