Got your tree up yet…the packages neatly wrapped with bright paper and ribbon clustered together under it? Is your menu planned for the festive day? Did you spend a whole day – or two, even three – baking Santa cookies and making fudge and Christmas candies? I know you have those Christmas crafts almost completed and the out-of-town gifts have been whisked over to the post office? And speaking of the post office – those cards were mailed out to all the family and friends ages ago, weren’t they?
Well…if you’ve checked off everything on this list or even one thing, you are far ahead of me! I honestly say I have not checked one item off that list up there. My tree is still in storage and hopefully the decorations are packed in boxes along side it. Aunt Tishy’s stars are twinkling merrily somewhere in a plastic box in Beal Parkway Storage!
I can remember when my kids were little and Christmas seemed such a rush. There was a whirl of activity and planning, but I got it all done. In fact I got it all done ahead of time. I had my packages wrapped and under the tree early, enticing the kids to whine and fuss wanting to open something early. I just dealt with it.
What was the point of carefully wrapping a package only to have the thoughtfully chosen paper and ribbon torn off, flung across the room, and discarded the next day? I wanted my packages to take center stage and be noticed and oohed and awed over for a while by everyone. It was the season to shine. The house was decorated from top to toe glistening with tinsel when the lights were turned low, the handmade wreath proudly hung on the door, the stockings I stitched myself were waiting to be filled, and with that many young ones underfoot the tree was decorated and undecorated countless times before the big day arrived.
Christmas movies and specials were watched every night. The big night was eagerly anticipated. Parades were participated in dressed as elves or presents or in dancewear. If you’ve never watched your kids dressed as gaily wrapped Christmas presents riding on the back of a flatbed truck you’ve missed the boat!
Now that the kids are grown and the girls all living in different states with families of their own making memories to share in later years, I don’t seem to worry as much about getting it done. Oh, It will get done. Andrew will be home in a few days and he will see that the tree is up and decorated. I’ll have his help and when H gets in from work it will be done – bright and festive!
Yes, it would be nice to have the whole family spend Christmas together under one roof. We’re too big. There are too many of us and we are too spread out. How would I every split myself into so many pieces to spend a bit of Christmas with them all? We all have Skype and Facetime and cell phones. Laughter can be heard and seen from far away.
We all spent Thanksgiving together – all nineteen of us – in one town – in two houses. It was wonderful – kinda, sorta. ;) That’s a story soon to come! Stay tuned.
Sometimes I feel bad because I don’t have the house attired in its Christmas dressings before Andrew gets off for the break between semesters. Sometimes, not. Maybe I procrastinate because I like his help. I enjoy having kids around to join in the fun. (I guess being twenty-two he is not considered a kid anymore, but he’s still the baby.) I like the thought that I still have one at home to celebrate – if you believe – Santa will come – that’s our motto. Of course H and I could do this all ourselves, but what’s the fun in that?
When I was a kid it was unheard of to put your tree up any earlier than two weeks or more before Christmas. Now as soon as there is nothing left of the Thanksgiving turkey except bare bones the tree is up and the decorations whisked down from the attic!
By Christmas day the needles have fallen from the real tree making it almost bare if it weren’t for the decorations and lights. What was once full and green is now needle-less and brown. Plenty of needles fall from those fake trees too. After three years or so it’s also looking a little sparse, but still green.
Time to take down the tree. It’s out the door and on the curb as quick as you can blink, decorations packed snuggly in their crates, snow globes placed carefully on a back shelf, and Christmas is over till next Thanksgiving.
Is it age that does this to me? I’m not a Scrooge. Christmas has always been a special time. I love to shop, and love to give. There just seems to be less and less time to do everything I once did as I get older. I think I’ll put my tree up next week and then leave it through the first of the year enjoying the lights and the glitter long after the rest of the world has gone back to everyday life.
Have you checked things off your list? Is your tree up and losing its needles fast?