This reflection written by Laura Albonesi originally appeared in the Superintendent’s Update by Superintendent Cliff Chuang on Friday, Dec. 8. Please find this week’s full issue of Superintendent’s Update and back issues at bedfordps.org.
Reflection by Laura Albonesi, Davis Teacher and Operation Holiday Coordinator
When I was asked to reflect on Christmas, I thought a lot about how lucky I am to have had my family’s traditions upheld for so many years. I think back to how magical the holiday was as a young child. Preparation for the Christmas holiday always includes my family’s search for the perfect tree, decorating to Mariah Carey’s holiday album and following handed down recipes for Italian cookies. During this season, our family also supports our community by sponsoring other families in need, and purchasing clothes/toys for them to open on Christmas Day.
My large family celebration, including my immediate family, grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins, is always held on Christmas Eve. Christmas Eve party dishes include the Feast of the Seven Fishes to prepare us to eat meat on Christmas Day, and many fantastic desserts.
After dinner, the children in our family open gifts from extended family members (grandparents, godparents). Following the party, my brother, my parents and I attend Midnight Mass at our local church. Each year, the church lights are turned down low and we join in singing Oh Holy Night.
After our family party and Midnight Mass, my parents, brother and myself return home, and my brother and I open one gift from my parents. As a child, I could always expect a set of Christmas pajamas. The next morning, we open gifts and stockings from each other and Santa.
Our Christmas tree stays up and lit through the Epiphany on Jan. 6. This day represents when the three Wise Men offered gifts to baby Jesus.
As the last ornament comes off our tree and we take it to the curb for pick up, my family looks forward to the next year when we can start these traditions again, surrounded by friends and family.
Read more reflections and school news from the Superintendent’s Office in issues of the Superintendent’s Update found at bedfordps.org.