Sunday, November 30, 2008

Pared Down Christmas

I usually go hog wild and crazy with my Christmas decorations. This year, however, since I had surgery less than a month ago, I had to pare down. I only got out two Christmas trees. I had to forgo all of the little vignettes I usually put up around the house. I have a hand painted (by me, thanyouverymuch) Christmas village that has a spot the living room. Then there is the Santa collection that is lovingly displayed in the playroom/office. I have acquired cookie jars, teapots, towels, salt and pepper shakers and various other objects d' Christmas that I sprinkle throughout the house. I leave no room undecorated, even bathrooms need a smidgen of holiday flare in the form of soap dispensers, towels and bathmats. All of that will have to wait 'til next year, because I can't manage to set it up this year.

Did I mention I am really getting tired of this walker? Okay... that is a discussion for another time, back to Christmas decorating.

All of that is just inside the house. I have been collecting and making more and more things to display in the front yard. Last year we added a five foot tall penguin, whose arms kept flying off with any random wind gust. My husband swears he is still going to put the lights on the house; it's just to windy today to do it. =O)

I let the kids decorate the trees. This is another area in which I have had to give up authority. I have no control over anything around here any more. Meals, laundry, cleaning, hair cuts, taxi driving -- I can't do any of that, so I have learned to let it go and let it get done as it may, by whomever it may. Not the easiest task in the world for a person like me. I have had had dominion over all of these elements for the past 14 years, but I managed to rise to the challenge.

The kids did a fairly decent job decorating the trees. They had a companionable time looking at all of the ornaments with their names on them that I have collected through the years. I get one for each child each year and put their name and the year on it. When they grow up they will have a whole assortment of ornaments to hang on their own tree.

For fun, I bought a gingerbread house kit for them to decorate. They anxiously awaited the first opportunity to decorate it. Alas, it didn't go quite as planned, the icing was runny and it wouldn't set up. It fell flat as the walls came tumbling down. They had a grand time, though. All they really wanted to do was eat the candy anyway.

It was really pleasant to watch them having such a good time. I am usually scurrying around getting everything set up, so I miss out on the sociable atmosphere; I just want them out of my hair. So all in all, I guess it is a good thing to have a pared down Christmas every now and then. I helps remind me of what first-rate children I have. I also gives me a chance to really focus on the gift that Christmas really is - one that should be savored and unwrapped slowly, not something that we scramble to finish in a rush.