Tuesday, December 12, 2006

It's Beginning To Look...

...a lot like Christmas! And, even better, I'm very much enjoying it. So far the holidays have not stressed me out. I don't usually get too stressed out and worked up about the holidays and instead find myself enjoying the season. It's mid-December and I'm pretty much done with my gift buying (but gift making is a completely different story...) and I've addressed all the envelopes (by hand - no computer-generated labels here) for our holiday card/letter (all 75+ of them), and we've started decorating the house. Started, but nowhere near being done. We have the tree, but it's still in the garage drying out. We'll hopefully get it in place in our living room tonight after Mr. Chick gets home from work. Then on Wednesday the kids and I can decorate it. Fun! But our stockings are hung by our chimney with care, so that's a start. I don't have many festive decorations for the house, so it takes me very little time to get them unpacked and put somewhere. The tree is the biggest thing and takes center stage.

Gifts this year were easy. My kids are at the perfect ages to buy for, and are both deeply embracing the belief of Santa. We've been to see old Kris Kringle and picked the perfect time to do it - NO LINES! I know! I was blown away, expecting to wait in a super-long line for our turn to sit with Santa and tell him what their little hearts yearn for. But we walked right up and got to just hang out with Mr. C for awhile, chillin'. It was great. And HE was great - REAL beard, very decent suit, not creepy. Plus he gave the kids full-size candy canes, not the itty-bitty ones. He'll be bringing Nicholas a new big-boy scooter (Razor) and the Cars movie in his stocking (along with a new toothbrush, socks, and jump rope), and Lauren will be getting a remote-controlled dinosaur that ROARS (exactly per request) and the Curious George movie in her stocking (along with a My Little Petshop creepy-looking toy she really really wanted and a new toothbrush to match her brother. They blink for 1-minute to help the kids brush long enough). From us the kids will be getting new pj's (to be opened on Christmas Eve with their cousins, who are also getting pj's), and a new outfit each. I know - boring - but Santa is getting all the glory this year. I had to buy something for the kids from their Opa and picked out a MarbleWorks set for Nicholas and a cash register for Lauren. They'll LOVE them. I think that's more than plenty for these kids. I wanted to get them stuff they'd be excited about without going overboard. I hope each toy/present isn't lost in the shuffle but cherished and appreciated. They'll also be getting gifts from grandparents and aunts, so they'll have nothing to complain about. Very fortunate kids. And, we didn't break the bank (much).

As for the gifts I'm making, I've finished one hat and am nearly done with the 2nd. That leaves just one more to go with 2 weeks to get it done. Should be doable, but close. I also need to make a beaded necklace for my mother and one for my great-aunt (the one who taught me to knit). Likely, Mr. Chick will ask me (at the last minute, no doubt) to make something for his mother and grandmother. So I'll have to work those in as well. The handmade gifts are the most stressful part of this holiday season by far. It can be tricky to find time to sit and work on them. We're still up to our eyeballs with the floor remodel, so that's a time-suck as well.

Oh well - perhaps snacking on yet another cookie and sipping yet another hot chocolate while listening to holiday music and/or the audio of another holiday movie while I knit my brains out will help.

Is anyone else mostly stress-free and able to kick back and enjoy the holiday season? I hope I'm not alone... this should be a time of wonder and excitement, not bitterness, anxiety and stress and financial ruin. If you're overwhelmed, join me in a cookie! I'm finding that cookies seem to help with most everything this time of year...

It's great entertainment to see how hard MP tried to abstain from answering the anons on her previous post. I can see it now...MP sitting in front of the computer (perhaps even getting up to pace the room)while furiously sipping her java.

"Wha..?!" I don't do any of these things, I hate these people, they are driving me insane...okay must write back and get the last word."

Then she writes her usual defensive response...then she deletes it...then she writes it again...then...

"AHA...COOKIES! Must-have-cookies...in order to suppress the need to respond, and let these idiots have it. Okay Okay...phew...mmm that was good. I'm a damn good baker, if I say so myself..."

You tried MP, but your silence is even more entertaining. You see, you are an open book, you're so easy to read, it is pathetic. Perhaps you are learning something from those nasty anons though...:)

Happy gift making. Now there is one of your better qualitites, I like knowing that some of us still practice this, it is much better than supporting corporate America, and being a consumerism slave.

Watch those cookies...they'll surely catch up to you...

Feliz Navidad!

I'm loving this Christmas. Since there are a lot of expensive things coming up this year, everyone in my family has just agreed to go extremely low key (one present per person from each person) and it's really nice. My shopping is already done, and the big thing for us anyway is actually the grocery shopping and cooking for Christmas. It's very relaxing. Plus, I just got hot chocolate mix and marshmellows for tonight.
Ouch. Paula, sounds like you could use a cookie (or the other, obvious something...)yourself.
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