Monday, December 28, 2009

Reflections on Christmas

Christmas is never quite what I envision. I picture myself being organized enough with preparations of food, gifts, wrapping, house cleaning and decorating by December 20th to sit leisurely by a fire with tea in a teapot by my side and write newsy notes in my Christmas cards to friends and family I don't keep up with as often as I'd like. Even reflect on the whole meaning of Christmas a lot more than I do. But isn't there always one more thing one could do?
I had a great holiday, with more time off than I've ever had. And I took a more relaxed approach-fewer expectations, looser schedules, stayed at my own house all day. And it was the same lesson I learn over and over again. Change comes from changing myself.
I spent time with all of my children and their spouses and their children at some point between 24-26th, not all at the same time, but with all of them, which was most important. Thanks to my friend Sue, who shares chalkboard ideas all the time, we have enjoyed this great chalkboard table cloth all week and it has been fun to see the doodles made by everyone finding chalk on the table.
My mother who also saw the value of loosened schedules and expectations planned an open house the day after Christmas from 4-? which ended up being a great time to see not only all three of my children and most of their families, but also niece, nephews, aunt, and great-nephew, too. I loved seeing my children all together there and the chance for them to visit with their extended family. While I visited, too, I was more an observer that night. Some gifts were exchanged, but no awkward feeling of needing a gift for everyone there.
It was just so fun! I hope it will be an annual event, which my mother took as "high compliment". When she is unable to do it, I will for as long as they want, for whoever can come.
I've spent more time sleeping later, unheard of for a type A like myself, and more time in pjs than maybe ever in my life. I'm still in them at 12:50 and my daughter and a son, who dropped by, have just left. We chatted, surfed the web, read the paper, discussed some shopping plans and future travel plans, all around the dining room table, coffee or coke in hand.
I plan to take the Monday after Christmas off next year, too. Just letting things happen, having more food than I needed (I know I am blessed in that regard) which made me feel prepared for anything, made for a wonderful holiday, and a celebration of Christ in my heart.
I may light a fire and put on the kettle for tea. I have some Christmas cards I'd like to write today.


Sue said...

Oh, it sounds wonderful and I'm so glad. Had to mean the world to your kids and your mom too. Tell me soon if you ordered your chalk cloth or found it around here. I'm so glad for this Christmas of good memories!

Yogi said...

Sounds like a fabulous xmas time. Thanks also for all the pics of your 12 day gifts. I really enjoyed looking at them and seeing them through your eyes.
I spent mine quietly at home, playing in my art room. Had a friend over for a play day yesterday.

donna said...

Now you've got me all interested in this chalkboard tableloth. I need to check that out for the future.

What lovely Christmas memories to keep close to your heart.

Yes, I do remember that Faye likes Bird of Paradise. I almost mentioned it in my post, but then didn't because I don't think she reads my blog. How cool that you remembered. I'll have to tell her.

Happy New Year to my art and farmer's market friend.