Merry Christmas!

Waking up on Christmas morning as an adult is not as exciting as it was when I was a child. The magic of Santa Claus has dissipated, the piles of toys are now a few boxes of sweaters and clothes and the remainder of the day is not spent playing with my new presents in my pjs. Although Christmas is not as magical for me as an adult, it is certainly different — and in a way that I appreciate more.

Christmas is no longer about presents to me, as it was when I was a child. Now, the best part of the day is gathering in the living room with my family and watching them interact as they open their gifts. It’s not what’s inside the boxes that matters; just being all together is enough for me.

I love to sit back and take it all in, I mean really look at each of my family members. When I do this, it usually hits me that we all will never be in this moment ever again; never again will we be our respective ages, on this specific day, in this specific year, in these specific circumstances. I wish I could freeze time and keep me and my family together in that moment for eternity.

When I realize this, I am immediately washed with melancholy,  but I slowly become filled with gratitude — gratitude for the day, for my wonderful family (and dog), for our cute little house, for my life and theirs. I suddenly recognize just how blessed we are not only to have the things we have, but to share these things with each other.

In moments like these, I always ask myself, “How did I get so lucky to have such a loving family? What did I do to deserve such incredible people in my life?” It amazes me that, for some reason, I not only get the chance to occupy the same time and space as them on this Earth, but that I also get the honor of calling them my family. It’s truly incredible how things align to create our current circumstances; call it luck or call it God, all I know is that I am the luckiest girl alive to have them for a family.

As all of these thoughts swirl in my mind in the midst of opening presents, I finally realize that while Christmas may no longer be about gifts for me, in a way, it still is — my family is the gift. Not just on Christmas, not just tomorrow, but every single day. For now and for always.

I have so much to be grateful for this Christmas, from my family and friends to you, my readers. I took a chance in creating this website all those many months ago, and seeing what it has now grown into is incredible to me. Thank you for sticking with me, and I hope you continue to follow me on this journey.

Merry Christmas, THL readers. I hope you are spending the day with those you love the most — I know I am.

XO,

Nicole

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