only 17 days 'till Christmas, and time's even shorter for my Jewish friends, with Hanukkah right around the corner. So how's everyone doing with their holiday stress?
I'm not too stressed, I guess, mostly because I'm abandoning the ideal of the "Perfect Christmas" this year. I'm completely disorganized with shopping--I keep buying presents, but I'm not too clear about what goes to who. It's all in a big pile upstairs. Recently both the toaster oven and the blender broke, so guess what my husband and I are giving each other for Christmas?
The decorating's pretty sparse so far - I threw up some lights in the front yard, mostly so my neighbors wouldn't think I was a total spaz, but inside, the only thing I've put up is a pine cone wreath that my daughter made last year. I'm thinking about a tree, but who knows when I'll get around to that? My big accomplishment so far is remembering by Dec 2 that I had bought an advent calendar a couple months ago. Some years I end up opening the first dozen windows all at once.
I floated the idea of going out to a restaurant on Christmas Day to the DH and kids, maybe to a Japanese hibachi restaurant. How did that go over? All I got were incredulous stares and a couple of laughs. Looks like it'll be turkey and cranberry sauce at home as usual. Unless the Bumpuses' dogs' come in and steal the bird.
Writing (and deadlines) will do that to you. Normal life drops right off the radar. Right now I'm deep into my second Druids of Avalon book, Deep Magic, and I've sworn to myself that the first draft will be done by Jan 1. And then there are revisions to tackle for Immortals: The Awakening, and a synopsis for my third Druids of Avalon book to turn in at some point (sooner, rather than later). And oh, yeah, keeping up with this blog...
But I do love Christmas. The big party for my extended family's Christmas is next weekend, and I'll be spending the entire day before the party making Italian honey cookies from a ridiculously complicated family heirloom recipe, in my memory of my mother. (After all, I'm the only one out of six kids who learned how to make them, and it's just not Christmas without those cookies!) And this is only the second Christmas without Mom, since she died just over a year ago. Making her favorite recipes helps me feel close to her.
Traditions? My favorite one is Christmas Eve, when my daughter and I (and sometimes the males in the family) watch "It's a Wonderful Life." Someday I'm going to figure out how George Bailey can toss off so many insults to all and sundry and still have everyone love him so much. Well, maybe everyone except for ZuZu's teacher and her husband.
Good luck with your own holiday preparations! Remember to take some time out, put up your feet and READ!
Until next Friday...