It’s that time of year again. Time for Silver Bells and Deck the Halls and a little Pa-rum-pa-pa-pumming. I was ambivalent going into this year’s Christmas Season. We have all been a little run down and sick with something that creates a lot of mucous, preschool has us on our toes more than I thought possible and there has not been a single nibble on any of those resumes the Hubs has been sending out. I wasn’t sure we could have a Merry Christmas when the odds were less than in our favor. All that was left to send me Bah Humbugging through the rest of the year was an arrow to the knee.
Then it hit me; sometime between the last of the turkey leftovers hitting the trash and the neon blue twinkle lights went on on the neighbors gutters across the road (show offs), I am really, really enjoying this year. Christmas-wise, at least.
I don’t know if it’s the Wee One’s sudden interest in all things Claus, or the days I spent chin deep in glitter making sparkly, secret gifts for those on our list, but something about this year is different than the others before it. Oh, don’t get me wrong, there is the usual stress; busy stores that are full of people pushing for “THE LAST ONE!” and worry over how we will balance our personal time on Christmas Day with the demands and desire to visit with loved ones about town. However, I’m not stressed about little things this year. I’m not wondering what I’ll get for Christmas and the fact that all our spare Christmas resources went to making sure that the Wee One had a few extras under the tree leaves me feeling more than happy in the knowledge that my gift this year is giving her a sense of joy Christmas Morning.
Maybe it’s all the Modge Podge fumes I’ve inhaled these past few weeks but I’m not as concerned with the gifts I’m exchanging with the adults in my life either. I’ve crafted quite a few things for the people close to me and mine and feel more content with the results of my labor and the money spent in their crafting than I have ever felt on any store bought bauble in past years. The Hubs and I are working together, as well, which we have never quite been able to do in the past when it comes to deciding who gets what, so there is a cohesiveness to our gifts that feels right.
I could complain about our circumstances (and, to be honest, I have). With The Hubs out of work, money is tight and we can’t always get what we want, or need, right away. But I am truly grateful that he is unemployed this year. I can say that because it has helped us really talk about what we want out of our Christmas this year and in the years to come and has given us a sense of what Christmas is really about as we squirrel away in the attic room to craft each other’s gifts and tuck away homemade treats into hand labeled goody boxes to give out to our friends and neighbors. It has been so easy to lose sight of the meaning of the holiday in the past, getting caught up in a frenzy of shopping and gift buying, spending and wastefulness. This budget conscious year has helped us appreciate the littler things in life and I am grateful that it happened.
I hope I can remember this feeling next year and the year after and that the small things we have been doing turn into lifelong traditions for The Hubs and I and maybe down the road, my Wee One will be doing some of these same things with her children at Christmases to come.
No matter what, I know this Christmas will be Merry and Bright.