Friday, December 26, 2014

Post-Holiday Glow....

The house has cups and crumbs and candy wrappers in every corner, and I just found two gifts that I'm certain do not belong to anyone who lives here sitting in a corner of the dining room under an orphaned jacket.  The high chair trays need to be put back on the chairs which are already buried in the hopelessly jumbled Harry Potter cupboard in the living room behind the tree.  The dishwasher is on its third run and I'm afraid to check Mount Laundry.  The now-flat stockings hang a little forlorn from a mantle where the Baby Jesus is surrounded by cans, loose ornaments, and all and sundry objects that needed rapid rescue from the hands of toddlers.  Citygirl and her love are loading their car to head off to visit his family a few states away and I won't see them until June.  My Mom is a bit winded due to six pounds of extra fluid from all of the salty holiday overindulgence, and if there's a spot on my glass coffee table without a smear or a tiny handprint on it I can't see it.

But joy to the world!  If I were Bob Cratchit I'd be late for work too, for we made rather merry yesterday!  From the time Citygirl and Babygirl finally put on an appearance at 9:30 until the final board game ended near midnight craziness reigned.  Running children, roasting beef, a race to finish a game before the roast was done (under the influence of some excellent bourbon), the usual miscount of plates and chairs:  An awesome celebration.

Today's mess highlights the blessings of my life:  Two highchairs aren't enough.  Expanding my six-foot-long table to twelve feet doesn't give me enough room to seat everyone I love.  Despite having my seven-year-old grandson jump up and down to compact the recycling bin, we have too many gift boxes and wrappers to fit.  Our Christmas tree stand is tough enough to withstand three toddlers; and our elderly dog is, too (although he did growl once, out of desperation I think).  I found at least one gift for everyone on my list that touched their hearts, and was similarly touched. 

Every holiday has its own life and spirit. Looking at the blog posts from the past three Christmases I have to say that this one seems to have gentler, less crazed, less stressed wind-up and execution than the those, and certainly better than the one before that (when my migraine medications led to a cardiac admission two days before Christmas and cardiac catheterization two days afterward!).  If I've learned nothing else, I've learned that there is no stress in the aftermath of a good time.  The honest work of housekeeping is comforting.  And the memory of love and happiness is truly the most priceless of gifts.

Merry Christmas from Mayhem Manor!

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