The Christmas Eve Tradition

Merry Christmas Eve, y’all!!

Through Elementary, Middle, and High School the three weeks of school between Thanksgiving break and Winter break were extremely busy but always fun.  They were fun for me because there was always some sort of holiday parties happening in our classes and at home! Christmas was around the corner and I was looking forward to it! In high school our midterms were a few weeks after Winter Break in January so we had a some what normal workload before Christmas.

Well- funny story (actually- a sad story) that is NOT how college is. I knew our finals for first semester were going to be before Winter Break but I didn’t really fully understand what that meant! It means that it is time to BUCKLE down and pull out whatever grade you possibly can with your final because, that little extra honors or AP credit that would be calculated into your grades in high school, doesn’t exist in college.  So no, the last few weeks of school weren’t a real thrilling or happy time in college. Such is life.

But as soon as I got home I started looking forward to the most treasured Christmas Tradition that my family has!  My family has always gone to my grandmother’s Christmas Eve Service on Christmas Eve- I don’t think there has ever been a year where we haven’t gone!

Christmas Eve Service 1

Wade and I last year at the service!

My feelings towards “church” have evolved a lot over these past few years- unfortunately, I became slightly disillusioned with the whole process of church-going throughout my high school years (I have happily grown to appreciate church more now that I am in college!). But the one thing that has stayed constant through any discontentedness was this Christmas Eve service! It does not change, it is almost the same thing every year, the same people are always there, and it reminds me of my grandmother.  She passed away in October of my freshman year but we all still continued to attend her service.  There is a part of her that still feels very REAL and very THERE when we sing Silent Night while holding candles.

church 1

church 2

For the past few years this tradition has become the most important part of Christmas for me. I am thankful for my Grandma’s memory and especially this service.


Another fun thing is that after the service we go home and my family eats a Chic-Fil-A platter of nuggets because the next few days is full of cooking for the adults so it is nice to take a break! Or at least I hear that it is nice to take a break.  I won’t try to convince y’all that I can cook because I would not be able to keep a straight face while telling that lie. Again- such is life.

One last thing! Tomorrow is my mom’s birthday! Although Christmas Day isn’t a ton of fun to have a birthday on she is one of the best Christmas presents I could ask for.  I love you, mom!

What are some traditions that you have? Whatever they are, I hope you enjoy them and cherish your family during these holidays! And college kids- I hope you are enjoy the sleep.  I may have been enjoying it too much these past few days. Haha- Happy Holidays & Merry Christmas, y’all!


Much Love,

Hadley Carter {happy hc}

Doing Hard Things

Hey, y’all!!

Wow!! Finals time in college is crazy. I don’t just mean crazy but actually CRAZY! I describe VT to people as a truly “work hard, play hard” kind of environment and right now is the work (really, really) hard period, as expected with finals.

The other night my fabulous roommate, Amanda, and I were having one of our very usual late night rant sessions. At about 1 am we were discussing the perils of the education system. I wish we were chatting about something cooler but please understand that this is a typical Amanda- Hadley late night conversation.

I could go on and on about what specifically we were talking about but essentially we both felt extremely frustrated with the need to understand calculus Math Emporium style. Why do we have to memorize problems to go to a room full of computers and recite from memory how to do those problems in the form of multiple choice questions? What’s the point? Why make life harder when it’s not important?

So after we calmed down and turned off the light I got on my phone and checked my timehop app.

SIDENOTE- I am obsessed with this app, it shows your social media posts exactly a year, two years, three years, etc. ago! It’s amazing!

This is what popped up:


I wrote that on Facebook four years ago.

I then proceeded to turn the light back on share this quote, four years later, with my (incredibly tolerant that the lights were being rapidly switched on and off) roommate.

It was that second after reading the quote I was reminded of something that is such a fundamental part of being successful and content…

The reason why we do hard things are because they are hard.

As simplistic as that sounds- If you are doing something challenging and hard right now the reason why you are doing it is because it is HARD, not because it is easy. Anyone can do easy. The folks who do “easy” gave up awhile back.

 You do what you do because it is impressive . You do want you do because it will help mold you and guide you. You do what you do because it will get you where you need to be. You do what you do because it is hard.

So as you go through the next several days of finals, tests before break for high schoolers, end of year deadlines for adults, or whatever else you have on your plate, I encourage you to remember that you are doing these things because they are hard. In life- you choose the hard things because that will make you grow, learn, and hopefully change for the better. At the end of the day the “hard” ends up making life that much richer.

Thanks for reading my Wednesday ramblings! Also- good luck to everyone finding out about Early Decision from VT very soon! I became a hokie exactly a year ago from tomorrowDecember 11th! I am excited to see it show up on timehop! Gotta love it.

Much Love,
Hadley Carter {happy HC}