Friday, December 25, 2009

An I.O.U. Christmas

Merry Christmas to all, as always. I hope your day has been filled with good friends, close family, and warmth. As I listen to the wind roar outside, I am grateful that I am not in the states that were hit with such a violent snowstorm or those that are stranded in airports. I will take my cozy house anytime.

It has been such an odd Christmas at our house. After a tough year, my work is really picking up. I am actually at a point where if someone else asks me to do a project for them in January, unless it's great money, the answer will probably be no because I can't fit it in. It has been a long, long time since I've been able to say that. It's another thing I am grateful for right now.

However, due to strange timing of checks, banks, holidays and karma, money just was not available like it should have been for Christmas shopping. When we did get some in, we used it to buy gifts for those far away because those presents had to be packaged up and sent to other parts of the country. After we did that, paid for the postage costs, and bought groceries, little was left. Coryn got his new computer tower--his Christmas money from Grandma and Elsie made that possible. Caspian got a full weight lifting set and bench--again, thanks to the holiday money from Grandma and Elsie. Nicole was able to go out and buy presents for her siblings, parents and boyfriend with that same money. Other than that, however, pretty much ZIP. When it came time to wrap, I had virtually nothing to do. The tree looked bare. As the mom and the breadwinner, I felt guilty. REALLY guilty. Rotten, depressed, awful guilty. I decorated the tree with envelopes full of I.O.Us for when the checks arrive next week. I apologized to everyone, with tears.

Guess what? No one cared. The day was still special. Everyone was still happy. At the risk of sounding like the narrator describing the enduring spirit of the Whos down in Whoville, not having lots of gifts did not matter. They know that next week I will run out and take advantage of checks cashed and post holiday sales and get them some treasures. Moreoever, they know that they are loved and maybe that is the best gift I could give them.

It was a lovely day despite the lack of presents. Jon spent it with us and made it even nicer with great gifts for each of us (Starbuck's will be seeing a great deal of us now!) and appreciating what we gave him. Joseph and I took a 90 minute nap in the middle of the day--a definite rare treat. I am refusing to do any work until tomorrow, another treat. People were missed, of course. Our eldest, who we haven't heard from since spring, was missed and we are hoping she had a wonderful holiday with her hubby and friends. My parents who LOVED Christmas were missed. I always got such a kick out of calling them and listening as they opened what I sent. I miss their laughs.

It is slowly getting dark outside but I know that each day now, the daylight will last a little longer and the night a little less and that means summer is returning. That is always a reassuring thought in the depth of winter.

Wishing you and yours a wonderful Christmas. May it bring you what you want. Mine already has.

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