I sat across from my three boys this morning reaching for the nearest napkin to stop the tear before it dropped onto my IHOP menu. Christmas Eve had finally arrived, and my Two-Egg Breakfast platter was on its way. The boys were laughing a little too loud while waiting on their food, but there were hardly any people in the restaurant so it wasn’t bothering me as much as it normally would.
Kevin and I sat reminiscing about the Christmas traditions of our childhoods and how those traditions had helped to establish within us a strong sense of family.
That’s what brought us to IHOP on Christmas Eve morning. Maybe this could be a tradition. It didn’t feel like one today, but maybe next year… or the year after that… or the year after that it would take root and anticipation about it would grow.
Broken crayons, half-colored kid’s menus, and two cups of coffee separated me from the three most important people in my life. The tears welling up in my eyes were filled with the happy memories of traditions past and the eager hope of traditions to come.
I dabbed the inside corners of my eyes just before the tears fell... just in time to welcome a plate of silver dollar pancakes for Silas and a Rooty Jr. for Liam. Silas proceeded to taste test all of the flavored syrups lining the end of our table. Liam ate everyone’s sausage. I babbled about my love for hash browns. Kevin ate the eggs off of Liam’s plate to make up for the sausage that Liam stole from him. We made conversation with each other. We even made conversation our waiter about the art of cooking eggs and flipping pancakes.
It wasn’t perfect.
But it was a start.
And maybe we’ll do it again next year.
Have you started any new Christmas traditions this year?