I've always loved Christmas. No matter what life has thrown my way, I refuse to let Christmas be ruined. Growing up, I never realized how much I would of loved to wake up at home Christmas morning. We always went to our Grandparents though. Sometimes to my Dad's parents before my parents divorced. When I was about 7, on the way home from Christmas at the farm, my Mother told us she and Daddy were getting divorced. From then on, we spent Christmas at my Mom's parents in Muskogee Oklahoma and then that night we would drive to Missouri to be with my Dad and Grandparents. Like clock work...every year. You might think that is a little sad, but I made the best of it. I looked at it as two of everything. All the poor other kids got jipped. My Grandmother Junie would have loads of gifts. Every year my Paw Paw would give her $500 cash. He'd hide it in the Christmas tree. One year she couldn't find it. She ripped that tree apart. Looked at every ornament. My Paw Paw had a funny sense of humor. That year he tricked her and didn't put it on the tree. We laughed at that forever. The year after my sister got married, "Santa" aka Junie filled our stockings. My sister got a pair of granny panties and I got a pair of sexy panties. Sister said, "Hey, I'm the one that's married"...and Junie said, "Exactly! Niki needs the sexy ones!"
Fast forward to when I got a job as a Flight Attendant. I worked Christmas forever. My Grandmother Junie once told me, "Christmas is not a day, it's a season". We'd celebrate whenever I wasn't flying, making our Christmas day whenever it fit. Nothing was going to get my Christmas down! The longer I flew, the more of the holidays I got off. Five years ago I had my first son a week or so before Thanksgiving. That same Christmas Eve my Dad died. You'd think that might put a damper on my Christmas spirit. (Yeah..ya think!) At his funeral, a friend of his did a eulogy. He said that God gave my Dad the greatest gift by taking him on Christmas Eve. I'll always remember that. Tomorrow is not only Christmas Eve, but the life and celebration of an awesome guy, my Daddy. The man was funny and charming. He lived life to the fullest. He was happy. Not even his death can ruin Christmas. We all do things around the holidays that we'd rather not. We all goes places and endure traditions that makes us crazy. Some of us even drink to get thru them! ;) (Yes...me!) But in the end the joy in my kids eyes, the laughter and making fun of tradition are all worth it. Merry Christmas!