Saturday, December 21, 2013

Random Acts of Christmas: Home Stretch

     I'm not ready.  Christmas is days away and I'm just not ready.  In fits and starts, I've gotten closer--I got the Christmas Albums finished  (they don't make themselves you know).  I found the dining room table. I filled the freezer with cookie dough.  I've ordered and shipped (most) of the gifts for the AWAY  wee ones. I cleared my desk at work of the loose ends that would haunt me during this holiday break. I'm still not ready, though.
    I know that it worries my family that I am not my usual whirlwind of holiday cheer.  They have extended plenty of grace to me these past weeks.  I cannot tell you how grateful I am for that.  I'm also grateful for the lessons of this stripped down Christmas.  Even with all the Tradition I've cut out or just not gotten around to--I didn't send out Christmas cards, we haven't watched a single Christmas movie (with the exception of about 1/2 an hour of White Christmas last week), we haven't attended most of the usual social engagements--I've experienced real moments of significant joy.  There was the hour I spent with some grade school kids this week, and the delight of opening the mail to find that Thing 1, my thoughtful daughter, had my favorite Christmas movie (the musical version of Scrooge starring Albert Finney) sent to me.  There was the surprising  response to one of my recent newspaper columns, and several encounters with people that remind me how rich in love I am.
     And, of course, there was this week's Giving-Not-Getting.  While most of our giving has been personal support of specific individuals, I am going to highlight two charities you might not know about.  We made a donation to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital which is widely known, of course,  and to this small, local charity the Lauren Zarembka Memorial Foundation. 
     In a few minutes, my FabFam will be heading to our lake house in New Hampshire.  It is slated to be a low-key, but festive weekend of good food, Christmas movies, and great company.  (Because my mother is involved, there is also likely to be matching pajamas for everybody, too.)
     Christmas will be here on Wednesday, whether or not I clean everything that needs cleaning, cook the entire feast,or get all the gifts.  I'm a bit unsettled about "blowing it." I'm trying to find a balance there.  In the end, I know that I will be with all the people I love and it will be more than good enough.

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