The past two Christmas seasons have been odd for me. I do all the "stuff" that all other families are doing for Christmas, like parties, gatherings, performances - but Christmas just doesn't feel like it used to for me. I feel like I am just going through the motions. I think I know what it is going on, but it is still hard for me to adjust.
First off, I don't have young children any longer to purchase toys or play Santa. One child is nearly 25 and living on his own. The other is about to turn 16. Without young kids in the house it just isn't the same. A couple of years ago we started the tradition of opening presents on Christmas Eve because quite frankly no one wanted to wake up early on Christmas morning and do it.
Second reason I think it didn't feel like Christmas this year is that we are not plugged in to a church family at the moment. The last 20 years has seen us going to candlelight services and the kids performing in Christmas plays, etc. at church - not this year. We are still trying to figure out where we belong at this point and it bleeds over into everything, including Christmas.
Don't get me wrong. I still enjoy being with my family and friends. We love to play games and just spend time together. The gatherings are great, but the Christmas Spirit so to speak wasn't with me and I miss it!