Thursday, December 22, 2011

If the barrels are not empty, we hope that you'll be kind

It's the night before the night before the night before Christmas, and if that doesn't give you a headache, then you are clearly made of tougher stuff than I am.  So good for you.

As for me, I am reminded why Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday: Because all you have to worry about is the meal.  And remembering to invite people over.  Much, much less stress involved.  Much less commercialism.  Not that this has anything to do with anything, but when I was in high school and college, Mom used to make me decorate her sugar cookie cutouts, and I would frost the trees and ornaments and candy canes and whatnots in funky colors and name them things like Ode to Commercialism, Which Doth Suck, and Mom totally let me, and then eventually it sort of got to be a tradition and expected, which was less fun, and then I moved away and Mom had to frost them herself, I guess.

Although.  Now that it's the night before the night before the night before Christmas, I can relax a little.  It's in the bag.  The shopping is done.  Santa* had his act together this year, and, thanks to the wonders of the Internet and ungodly shipping charges, is all set to go.  (Santa has had some very close calls in the past.  Santa learns from his mistakes.)  The girls' presents are wrapped and underneath the tree.  The gifts slated for my family's Dec. 23 gathering are in one pile, those for the 24th in another, and those traveling to the hinterlands in yet one more.  And, not having any idea what they do at the office, I've got six jars of various jams wrapped and labeled and ready to go.  At first I was going to do three, but then I panicked.  It's too much, and yet, not enough.  I am telling myself the chips will fall where they may, and I will be okay with that.  And next summer I am making way more of this sort of thing for this very scenario.  Jam for all!  Next year.

I mailed out the last of our Christmas cards yesterday (although Eric had a couple of people on his list that are apparently not in my address book, but the good news is that I did not have to personally deal with that).  I sort of know what I'm supposed to bring to Christmas Eve at my parents' and Christmas Day at Eric's brother's house, and Eric has volunteered to go to the store for me tomorrow and follow my list EXACTLY.  (This is no small promise.  I have specific ideas about how this sort of thing should go.  I can't help it.  OCD.)

The tree is losing its needles, but really, who cares?  My personal tradition on Dec. 26 is NOT to hit the stores for after-Christmas sales, but to take down the tree.  Two weeks is my limit.

So!  There's that.  All pluses.  Maybe the only negative is that my schedule/routine is completely messed up and my stomach hurts and mostly I just want to read instead of embrace adult responsibility.  (Although I did embrace it, I guess, since everything got done.  Or at least grudgingly admitted it.  Same thing, really.)

But!  This has been the best week of work EVER.  Yesterday we had a feast for lunch.  It was awesome, and slightly insane.  And can I just say that I have never seen so many lunchmeats in my life?  Today was pizza.  Plus.  Everyone just seems to be in a good mood.  Even Cranky Steve?  Isn't cranky.  THAT is the level of festive-ness I'm talking about here.

Stone cold crazy, yo.

It's just been fun, is what I'm saying.  It's always practically a vacation because I don't have to fold laundry or clean toilets while I'm there.  But this week has been something MORE.

Maybe the Christmas spirit got to me after all.  Huh.  Weird.

*P.S. My girls?  Are wonderful.  They tend to NOT say what they want for Christmas because they don't want to hurt our feelings (or Santa's feelings) should things not work out.  Plus they tend to be grateful for anything/everything.  Lovely!  But sort of hard to make a list.

Tonight when I was tucking Johanna in, she asked, in a very little voice, if I thought Santa could bring her a Ghoulia Yelps Monster High doll.  I said, you know, Santa has skillz, so that's definitely a possibility.  She seemed very pleased.  But THAT is the first she's mentioned this to me.  Her heart's desire.  (Luckily Santa saw the letter she had written for literacy block at school.  And eBay came through even though the rest of the Internet was out.  Technology?  Is awesome.  Good thing Santa knows everything.)

This is Ghoulia.  She's a zombie, so she just grunts
a lot.  But!  She has cool hair.  And an owl.

Sting, "Soul Cake."  Because I can.  And I love how he says "pocket."  Actually, I listen to this song all year long.  I just like it.

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