When I was a little girl, going to my grandmother’s home on Christmas Eve was one of my fondest memories. Our small family would gather and open gifts and share dinner. I couldn’t tell you what I got for Christmas on any given year or what was on the menu. But I can tell you about the beautiful Royal Albert china that she brought out for the occasion. The Christmas tree made of feathers that sat on a table with presents tucked under the limbs. And the illuminated Santa face in her window that my brother and I said goodnight to before we headed home hoping we would be among his stops before morning.

When Grandma passed away, I felt Christmas fade a little with her. My family was never good at having those decorative constants, or those staunch traditions. That was Grandma’s department. But everything changed the day I met my husband, Robb.

Robb is about family, consistency, loyalty, memories, and tradition. He’s about building and loving, and on our first Christmas, we found the beginning piece that would start our story: an ornament that stated Our First Christmas Together, 1989. We hung it on the tree.From that day on we continued to add to our collect. It became a yearly pilgrimage to the stores and bazaars to find the perfect rustic snowman, or crazy knit capped penguin, Santa with a surfboard, the Americana, the vintage angels, the handcrafted candy canes. Each year, we added to the layers of our life by way of trimmings and created a place for our kids to be and to come to find tradition and remember.

As I sit in my living room and assess the many holiday themed pieces, I see an accumulation of my life woven together with Robb. I’m surrounded by the reflection of who we were—and who we’ve become. At this time of year, I find myself sentimental like my grandmother, and that thought alone makes my holiday more special.

Like Robb, my grandmother understood the need for tradition and creating memories. I hope for you all, that as you dig into your seasonal inspirations that you find both tradition and loving reflections. I know I did. I do every year.

I set out this month to be inspired each day to find the thing that makes me happy. I call it #MyDailyWag. I need look no further than my Christmas tree to smile.

My question for you: What memories are in your holiday boxes that tell your story?

Thank you,

Mary Keliikoa