Every year there are so many things that we have to DO to get everything ready for the holidays….You know, you like to minimize it in the coming months, you laugh at the holidays as they patiently sneak up on you….and then every year you make a solemn oath never to let it be that crazy ever again, and then it happens all over….
Well, this year, I had a plan. I have a new baby coming in the next six weeks, give or take, and my ‘baby’ is a very independent three year old. So, I thought I could “get it together,” with no problem…what I wasn’t expecting, was, um, the end of pregnancy. I got so high on life in the second trimester, finally having energy and all, that I over estimated my prowess for the finishing of important tasks….like baking for Christmas (my dearest husband did that, thanks Sweetheart)! And my big ideas about putting away meals in the freezer….those are yet to be seen. For some reason, when I think I’m cooking double, we actually just eat the leftovers the next day, and nothing ever really gets stored up….have you found that preteens and teenagers can easily eat you out of house and home?! They can literally eat DOUBLE what I eat, and still need more food. Its nuts. Now, given, they play sports and are growing and all that good stuff, I just FORGOT how much food needs to be consumed, I guess. SO, I’ll keep cooking and maybe the trickle into tomorrow effect needs to be good enough for now. Plus, I make them help me all the time, and for the most part, they are cooperative, so I am hoping they are able to assist with cooking when the newbie finally makes his appearance.
Next on my long list of Advent preparations, is of course: the gift wrapping. We have found that each year we go way overboard, not intentionally, its just so easy to do, when you love your kids, and you want to surprise them, and you know what they like…..ok, I’m making excuses. We do go overboard, truly, so this year we decided to set a limit, and each kid wrote their top five things they wanted, and my husband and I decided to only buy one another a few small things, and we would save the money for a trip this summer…..it was a great motivation. I love to give gifts, but I enjoy DOING things as a family even more. This pregnancy, partly because of my thyroid pooping out on me and an overall feeling of being T I R E D…. I have so appreciated going out to eat. And actually, it doesn’t even matter where, it could be pizza or a nice sit down place, I don’t really care. I just don’t have it in me to cook. The creative energy is all being put elsewhere? MAYBE?! I have never before been so thankful for restaurants! So, whenever I thought of wanting to spend more money on gifts, I would think, if I can resist the urge, I could have that cash for a trip to Wendy’s! Ha! That sounds crazy, probably, to those of you who know how much I love food, and healthy eating! I have two words: LIFE HAPPENS. It’s not going to be ideal all of the time, and sometimes a little Junior Bacon Cheeseburger will just have to do. SO, don’t beat yourself up. And, just for the record, when you do allow yourself simple luxuries, your attitude and the overall peace in your world may improve. And all my gifts are wrapped. So there….. I’m pretty proud.
On the agenda for this week was getting the house ready for a new baby. Well, ever since we cleared our living room of toys to fit our beautiful Christmas Tree, we have dispersed our toy collection to places where it didn’t really fit, and the house has felt like a Barbie Emporium and a wooden toy exhibition combined, and I could really do without another day of trying to keep it at bay. So, today, Monday, day of all days, I got it in my craw that we would move unused toys either a) OUT OF MY HOUSE or b) down the basement. We did a good job, washed and put away the baby clothes and diapers, rearranged the little kids room, put away the kids kitchen for a season, and moved all Barbie related paraphernalia into a restricted area we call the Hidey Hole. It’s like this tiny half an attic room in the little kids bedroom that usually has a combination of art supplies, Doritos, and dress up clothes crammed into it. I must have been deluded in my fragile state, because I convinced myself (with a little persuasion from my eldest, although like her mother, not particularly spatially gifted daughter), that the hella huge Barbie house was going to fit inside of the Hidey Hole. No.Can.DO. And believe me, we tried. We tried a couple different ways, and that thing is so big and bulky, there is no WAY without disassembling it, that we could ever fit that house in there. Damn Barbies.
Anyway, if I can figure out how to use the screw driver and get the thing apart, I will GET IT IN THERE, but until then, I feel pretty satisfied with our progress. We were able to get a couple of bags of toys and trash out of the upstairs, and the kids always find something “very important,” that they have been missing for quite some time during these cleaning escapades, so all were happily playing and thrilled about life.
Needless-to-say, with Christmas two days away, I feel ready. It’s not absolutely perfect in everyway, there are the usual family ups and downs that happen with everyone during the holidays. There is the usual annoying waiting that drags on towards the end of pregnancy. There are the kids emotional upheavals from being stuck inside the house too much….But generally, it’s merry and bright, and all the Christmassy things are turning out alright. I hope you too are able to feel blessed, and enjoy your Christmas! And God Bless your last minute preparations!