Tag: Holidays

1 Holiday Down, 1 To Go

1 Holiday Down, 1 To Go

Christmas is over, that’s one special occasion down and one to go. New Years here I come.

Now this makes it sound like I don’t like the holidays, and that’s where you’d be wrong. I like them just fine, don’t necessarily love the season but certainly don’t dislike or hate it. I think it’s more the buildup and subsequent beehive of activity has leaves me now with a somewhat anti-climactic sense of blah.

Grey and overcast days contribute to the malaise, as does the withdrawl from sugar and high fat foods, and the desire to binge on the goodies and liquid Christmas cheer.  Look at me, I’m so hard done by.

It’s time now for the homesick, comfy clothes, the routine that signifies back to normal or the return to days without real purpose other than perpetual ‘do what you want’.  After all I’m retired now and my days are essentially filled with finding what interests me most on any particular day and doing it.  That could be anything from spending time on the computer, writing, shovelling, or doing laundry.  Such a range, such a life.

Did Putting up Christmas Lights Darken My Day?

Did Putting up Christmas Lights Darken My Day?

It’s cold today, bitter cold. Not the kind of day you want to be outside working, no sun, some fog, and enough breeze to put a chill in your bones. One of those days where the cold goes right to your bones. I had to do it though, go outside to put up lights I mean, it was only my procrastination and lack of motivation that put me there so late in the season so “quit your bellyaching” I tell myself, and move on.

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Christmas lights on handrail

It was putting up Christmas lights that placed me out in the frigid air, 2 days in a row no less. Mind you it was only about 45 minutes yesterday to put lights on the front of the house, maybe an hour today to put them on the handrails of the deck. All told not too bad, a small effort for a big reward. And todays effort took longer than it should have because I screwed it up the first time and had to re-do it.  I was afraid it was going to hate putting out the lights, I thought it might bum me out as that’s what it generally did prior years. For whatever reason the whole Christmas experience often ended up being a negative thing, hanging the lights was the least of it.  And it wasn’t the meaning of Christmas, I’m totally onboard with that.

I think the biggest cause of my Scrooge-like feeling was the stress it used to create, primarily between my wife and myself. It was partly the shopping, partly the ongoing house decorating, but I think primarily the big family gatherings. Now don’t get me wrong but it wasn’t family per se that put me off but rather the number of family (people in general) and the ensuing din throughout the house. I’ve never been one to thrive in large groups, preferring smaller more intimate gatherings, and throw into the mix the rambunctious kids all wound up from the Christmas festivities and accompanying treats. What can I say, I’m an introvert and happy to be so.

But I digress. The point is Christmas used to be a dreaded holiday, including lights, but now not so much. In some ways I actually enjoy the event of hanging lights , not withstanding the sub-zero temperatures. Dare I say that I feel somehow blind-sided by this turn of events. I think I actually might have enjoyed putting them up, and hold your flippin’ hat, I may want to put up more.  Maybe Christmas ain’t so bad after all, perhap the lights didn’t darken my day.

Happy Birthday Shawn

Happy Birthday Shawn

All is done and we’ve survived another one, at least I have to this point anyway.  Mo is still cooking though and likely won’t be done until later tonight.  She upholds her Grandma’s commandments, all 37 or more of them, this one being that no turkey shall be cooked without the bones being boiled for soup.  She steadfastly soldiers through the day completing this task, not saying “done” or “I give” until the last container has been filled and there’s no leftovers left over.  She is a trooper for sure.

We both made it through yesterday without any emotional upset, and although I wouldn’t have been surprised to have shown, or seen, some I’m glad it didn’t come.  The reason?  Oct. 9th was our son Shawn’s birthday and he would have been 29 had he still been with us.  Sadly he left us suddenly over 10 years ago and although we think of him almost daily his passing was not more painful to recall yesterday than on other days. It’s always sad no matter what, Thanksgiving or not.

Dad stayed over last night instead of going back to the home, he was happy to do that and I think enjoyed his time with the family.  As Mo said he hasn’t had that much family contact for years and that will make his last years in the area much happier I’m sure.  On the way here before dinner yesterday I drove him by the seniors home here in town and he mentioned numerous times how It would be so much easier for him to be here in town instead of his current location 20 miles away.  I have to agree, and that was why we initially wanted him here, to be closer to us.

Long day

Long day

Well the turkey binge is done, all except the crying….and dishes of course.  Mo has worked tirelessly for a few days now in preparation for the feast and I think it went of pretty well.  Not all the guests arrived unfortunately, her sister(s) never showed although one of them said she wouldn’t be there up front.  The other apparently had a sore knee or something so left it to her husband and son to pass on the news.  Sorry, I think (I hope) I would’ve called and said my regrets personally and not left it to someone else.

I went into Trail and picked up Dad for the Thanksgiving feast and I think he enjoyed it.  It’s nice to be able to spend some time with him, I’m not sure how many good days we have left.

On the way in I saw a woman hitchhiking, waving her arms madly and gesturing in a very frustrated fashion.  The weather was nice, the sun was still shining and I was in a good mood so I stopped to pick her up.  Her car had broken down and she had to get back to Trail.  She was very frustrated that not one person stopped in over an hour she said, I can understand her angst.  Regardless I stopped and for that good deed she was very grateful.

She had lost her husband a couple years ago and was still feeling the pain.  We chatted a bit about each other, ok mostly me, but once she opened the verbal floodgates she was non-stoppable. I was glad I could be there for her.  As I dropped her off I only asked she return the favor by doing something good for someone else.  She assured me she would.  I hope she does.