At 5:30 this morning the phone rang and a recording informed me that school was canceled for the day. Called it! I tried to fall back to sleep, but once my brain engaged, I knew it was futile. Our dog Casey, however, decided to sleep in and was still snoring on the bed (with my husband away, I may have slipped and let her sleep on the bed) at 8:00 a.m.
So I started the day off in the dark, quiet house with a leisurely cup of tea, making big, Christmassy plans for the kids and I. I was to find out later, that the kids had plans of their own.
The first order of business was to decorate Hector, our Christmas tree. But when push came to shove, and after a lengthy debate, the kids admitted that they didn't feel right decorating without their dad.
"That's fine," I said, "we'll bake cookies instead." The kids' reaction was lukewarm at best. I took a deep breath and tried again:
"Ok, why don't we make Christmas ornaments," I suggested. A long shot, perhaps with two boys, but I was expecting my crafty daughter to jump at the chance. Instead, you could have heard a pin drop.
And as my plans for the perfect snow day evaporated, I realized, not for the first time, that having three teenagers was a whole new ball game and that it was time for me to seriously alter my expectations. Growing pains.
But there was still the problem of my quest for Christmas spirit. Already feeling disappointed and a little sad, I knew that today was not going to be easy -- until it occurred to me that instead of doing something to enhance my Christmas spirit, I should think about the Christmas spirit of others -- specifically my mom and sister.
For the past few years my mom, my sister, and I have exchanged homemade Christmas gifts. This year they've totally gotten the jump on me. My sister has been working on hers for two months, and my mom is finished with hers. And me? Well, I... uh... haven't even started my gifts. In fact this morning I hadn't even decided what I was going to make.
Today my kids inadvertently gave me a gift -- a wide open afternoon. And I spent that afternoon happily in my sewing room designing a project for my mom and sister. I can't divulge the details here. They are, after all, readers of my blog (at least they'd better be!). But I can confess that not only am I thrilled to have finally started their gifts (hopeful that two weeks is enough time to finish them), I'm also relieved that after a shaky start, I managed to end the day with my Christmas spirit, such as it is, intact. Phew!
|Despite her lack of interest in cookie baking and ornament making, |
my daughter, Grayson, did make this contribution to our Christmas decor!