As a child, Christmas Eve was simply the day before we got to open presents. It was so hard to settle down at bedtime, but before we did we always set out sugar cookies and a glass of milk for Santa. My sister and I would head off to bed and whisper for a long time about Santa coming, how was he going to get in (we had no fireplace or chimney) and what he would leave for us.
As a parent, Christmas Eve has turned into a busy day of getting the house ready for family to come over, preparations for the Christmas meal and trying to keep the kids out of the presents already under the tree. As in years past, we attend the early Christmas Eve service at our church filled with wonderful carols and the children's pageant depicting the story of the birth of Jesus. We always manage to be home right about bedtime, so we get out cookies and milk for Santa as well as carrots for the reindeer (my husband's tradition), then we read either a story about the nativity or The Night Before Christmas or both. It is so much fun to see the delight and anticipation in our children's faces. It brings back fond memories of our own childhood.
After the kids are in bed, there is something very peaceful about the quiet. It is a time for us to relax for the busy day to come and to reflect upon the miracle that occurred over 2000 years ago.
On behalf of my family, we send good tidings to you at Christmas and the whole year through.