On the Holiday Season

by Shawna Kersenbrock


Will you be dashing through the snow this holiday season?  Will you stop and enjoying the senses of the season?

Christmas is my favorite holiday.  I love decorating for it (which I did November 15th this year).  I love ALL the senses of the season:

  • Smells from the fresh cut evergreens and apple cider brewing on the stove.  The smells of my mother’s kitchen as we do our annual girls holiday baking.
  • The sight of the holiday colors in all the lights.  The sight of my mantel and all the Santas and snowmen I’ve collected over the years.
  • The touches from all my loved ones with hugs saying hello, hugs saying thanks for such a thoughtful gift, hugs saying “I love my Favorite Aunt Shawna,” and of course the dreaded hugs goodbye.
  • Listening to my cousins sitting around the tree singing Christmas carols awaiting Santa’s arrival and hearing the noise level at a new height every year.  I love hearing the holiday music playing in every store you go.
  • And of course my ultimate favorite the sense of tasting all the wonderful food the whole month of December!

When I first got married I declared that my “Holiday Season” would never change.  Why do we do this as humans speak out that word…. that 5 letter word… NEVER?

Well as you can guess it did change.  Growing up as a child we spent our holidays the same every year.   Christmas was celebrated Christmas Eve morning with my immediate family.  Then after we cleaned up the mess we dashed an hour away to go to my Dad’s family (all 13 of his sibling and their children, and their children, and of course Grandma Eberle) for the remainder of the holiday.  And I can remember Grandma Wolf (my mothers mom) would work us in whenever we could all get together.  So you can imagine when I married a “local” his family had their traditions as well.  So the first few years guess what we did.  WE DID IT ALL!!! Which was when I felt the song Dashing Through the Snow had a new meaning!  And I declared we would NEVER do that again!

That being said, can you imagine how I felt when my husband Mike approached me this year with a new holiday idea? Haven’t I had to go outside the box enough and split my time with his family? He now wants me to leave my favorite time of year and go not 20 or 60 minutes away but far enough away you need a passport to get there.  Many of you know my husband, but for those who do not he is one who does not travel far from home. We’ve never left home for more than four days that didn’t include a trailer full of horses and a horse show somewhere — and never over the holidays.  Well guess what? That word NEVER is playing a large role today.  We are leaving for seven days over CHRISTMAS to Mexico.  YIKES…. How will I manage?  It was hard enough telling our kids (who are extremely excited they get to trade in coats and winter gloves for swim suits and flip flops), but telling my Mom (from whom I get the love of the holidays) just about broke my heart.

So, this holiday I wont be dashing through any snow.  I will be at a slower pace for seven days with the people I love the most in this world, my husband and three kids and all the senses that come with it.

Happy Holidays from the Kansas Office!

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