It seems like every year the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas gets shorter and shorter. I know that that is not really true but it sure feels like it. We all have those special holiday traditions that we grew up with that we want to share with our families and then of course you have new traditions as a family too. One of the things we always did at Christmas time was bake. This holiday I have been thinking more and more about my grandfather. He was a retired milkman turned baker. He was the one who taught me how to bake. Baking and cooking are not the same. Those who bake know that baking is a science. It takes exact measuring and timing to have your bakery items come out right. I learned how to bake all kinds of cookies and bread and of course his famous sticky buns. He started taking orders in August for his sticky buns for the holidays. I would love it when he let us help make the sticky buns. The sweet smell of brown sugar and cinnamon would fill his small bakery that was in the basement of his house. I think that is why I love the fall and Christmas smells so much because it brings me back to those days in the bakery. I am the only one in the family that makes the sticky buns. When I took over making the sticky buns my dad was my critic. I have to say it took years of trying before I believe I make them almost as good as my grandfather did. With our busy lives these past few years, I have not made them but this year thanks to the help of my daughter, we made 9 pans of sticky buns. It is a true labor of love making sticky buns, it takes all day. But it is so worth it when I get to share them with others and watch them enjoying them.
I get that same feeling when we have our children's events. I love watching the children and families enjoying themselves. This year we tried something new and had our Children's Christmas Party event during our Sunday Morning Blast this past Sunday. We know how busy families are and we ask "how can the children celebrate the true meaning of Christmas without adding another item on parent's Christmas to do list?" The answer was let's do it on a Sunday Morning! The children had fun decorating gingerbread trees, playing "Jingle" (Christmas bingo), making wreaths, and remembering what the real meaning of Christmas is while playing a fun game. It was all topped off with hot chocolate, Christmas cookies and snowballs (cheese balls). The children all received a small gift but they know what the real gift of Christmas is, the gift God gave us, His son Jesus.
As you go through this holiday season please take a moment and remember those who have influenced your life in some way and also take time to remember the true meaning of Christmas.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year
Ellen Foss, Director of Children's Ministry