Mele Kalikimaka

Mele Kalikimaka!  I like the way that sounds. Christmas at our house was always filled with the same traditions.  Christmas Eve spent at my Nannie’s house in Amelia, eating supper and unwrapping gifts.  During the ride back to Buckingham we tuned into Christmas carols and looked for Santa, spotting Rudolph’s “red blinking” nose a few times along the way.  Falling asleep was nearly impossible, but always happened, if not only for a few hours, as I undoubtedly woke up around 2:30 and 3AM sometimes, feverishly shaking my sister and parents, begging them to go open presents.  Apparently, not unlike my sister, I had almost always snuck into the living room before hand to make sure Santa had, infact delivered!  Covered in presents, wrapped and unwrapped, our family loaded the room down with gifts out the wazoo.  I can still remember the excitement of Christmas morning, and the few “Santa” memories that came along with them.  A muddy boot print left on the rug.  A calligraphy note accompanying my dollhouse.  The intricate story of my Uncle Buttons’ journey to the North Pole, where there, caught in a blizzard, he was rescued by Santa’s workshop.  And, of course, the Christmas Eve “prayers” that “if there is a Santa, he would make my Kitaboo (my favorite stuffed animal) new again” (because Kitaboo had suffered the unfortunate destiny of being put in the washing machine, resulting in a matted coat).  THOSE two years of unspoken “prayers” to God about Santa were fulfilled by sheer coincidence, but kept me believing.  Kept my faith.  And, as my sister recounts, a stocking stuffer ticket to Janet Jackson’s concert was also my most memorable gift.  But I don’t know what else Sarah is talking about, I always had to beg HER to wake up! Oh, and let’s not forget the year Sarah told me it was Christmas Eve and I woke up SO EARLY and excited and snuck into the living room to find NOT A SINGLE PRESENT.  It was, in fact, NOT Christmas Eve.

Through the years, our Christmas days have changed, going from rooms filled to the brim with shiny toys to adopting families and sneaking delivering gifts to make their Christmas memorable, to mailing packages of goodies to Afghanistan.  Christmas in Hawaii has been different than any other Christmas at home, that’s for sure, but even though we don’t get to be around our close friends and family this season, we are excited to finally be able to start our own traditions, together.  We’re grown-up now, and as bummed as I am that the day finally came that I would no longer be showered with Barbie’s and Ribbon Dancers, Im looking forward to starting something new.  Traditions that will follow us from state to state, home to home.  What we make ours.  But one thing’s for certain, Christmas morning mimosas ain’t going NOWHERE!

Now, if I could just get Gary, our new Elf on the Shelf to stop drinking and start moving, we’d be in business!  ;)


Here are some small presents we wrapped and mailed back to our families in the states.  Mental note:  when it won’t fit in a priority mail box, it’s a whole lot cheaper to order it online and ship it directly.  Merry Christmas!  ;)

What are some of your favorite family traditions, or some you think WE should adopt?  I think once we have kids, we will record their reactions to gifts, not unlike Jimmy Kimmel’s experiment.  Probably even give them wrapped half-eaten sandwiches, too.