Blog  /  Heart of the Home, Love, Darcy  /  HomeWords – Winter 2009


It was to be a Christmas season of firsts and lasts. This would be the first year that not all of our children would be home for the holidays. Cody was spending his first Christmas as a married man with his wife and her family in Houston. For Shiloh, who was to be married in a few months, this would be the last Christmas morning she would wake up in our house. Next year, she would be in her own home with her new husband.

Karis, who lives nearby, was already married and the mother of two (if I do say so myself) beautiful little girls. As it was, Colt was the last man standing and the only survivor on the Kimmel Island.

Our Christmas morning tradition had been that all of the kids would wake up early and come crawl in our bed as we got up to get things ready for the big day. We’d put on our robes and slippers and, as quickly as possible, go out to fill the stockings and get breakfast started before the kids could get up and spend the next 5-6 hours demolishing what had taken weeks to create.

But now we only had two kids at home and both of them would rather sleep as long as possible in their own beds. However, even an 18 year old can’t resist the excitement and mystery of Christmas morning and eventually, Colt convinced Shiloh to get up and come downstairs. But as he descended the stairs, he stopped and looked at Tim and me, now completely dressed, coiffed and coffee’d and said, “Oh no you don’t! Get back into your pajamas. There may be a lot of things that are changing this year, but we are not going to get dressed until after we open all of the gifts.”

I think it’s called the “last straw”. We finally realized how hard it is for the youngest to see everyone abandon ship and change the “way things used to be”. Colt was experiencing some of the same mixed emotions that we have as our children grow.

It took us just a few minutes to get back into our PJ’s and then, with a touch of the familiar, we began to enjoy the way things are going to be, with many things changing but some things remaining the same.

Here’s to first and lasts and some things that don’t change,


Darcy Kimmel

Darcy Kimmel has a heart for encouraging and equipping parents and grandparents to maximize their unique callings in life with the Grace Based Parenting model for relationships. Her greatest joy comes from her own family and relationships. Darcy speaks at marriage and parenting events with her husband Tim. As a writer, Darcy is co-author of several books on parenting, grandparenting and family relationships.