Tuesday, December 4, 2007

I'll Be Home for Christmas....

Yes, Christmas is fast approaching. My decorating is finished. I'm mailing out the last of my Christmas cards today. Well, except for maybe one or two I'll mail if I ever hear from a couple of friends who I emailed to request their snail mail addies.

We've gotten most of our shopping done, other than a few treats to put in the kids' stockings and I still have some wrapping to do...mostly the gifts from Santa and the couple we are giving the kids from us and the one that needs to be wrapped for my stepson's Christmas party at school.

I'm also eagerly awaiting the shipping and arrival of the "secret" present from Santa that will be for the entire family- a karaoke machine and a few CD+Gs to get us started. I decided this year there should be a gift to all of us as a family from Santa under the tree. Even my husband isn't aware of this gift. hehehe...HOHOHO! I'm being Sneaky Santa this year! LOL
The house is warm and toasty, for the most part...other than a few drafts that sneak in when the wind gets up. I've had to put up plastic over the window in my stepson's room and in the kitchen over the back window that has the air conditioner in it. Brrrr....

I've been sipping General Foods International Coffees in flavors that remind me of the holiday- French Vanilla Cafe and Suisse Mocha. Yummy! I've also had some Egg Nog already and I've got my holiday mix of red and green M&M's to nibble on from time to time.

The outside of the house is reminiscent of how my grandfather would decorate his house for Christmas. We spent several weeks before Thanksgiving checking the lights, which stayed up all year, though only turned on during the holidays and changing out the shot ones.

We'd have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day and then when it got dark, my grandpa would turn them on for the first time. I can remember how even when the wind was bitter and ripping through me, bringing tears to my eyes, I still felt this warmth excuding from inside at how beautiful the lights were.

We'd all go stand outside and look at them for several minutes. He ran a junk yard that had a tall fence to keep the lot from being an eyesore, and he had the lights strung up all the way down the fence row in both directions from the house. We'd all walk down there, oohing and ahhing over how great it was. It always filled me with a sense of awe, a sense of the holiday spirit.

Between my grandpa decorating the fence and house and my mom always going all out to decorate our house, I was blessed with this "traditional" inclination myself. It's not for competition, it's for the pure joy of being able to light up my home and hedges with bright colorful lights and enjoying it with my kids the way I did as a child.

I love seeing their faces light up, the shimmer of awe in their eyes and hearing their oohs and ahhs. It fills my heart even more with the spirit of the season, the small joys children get from seeing those festive lights, even if they're only up for a month or so...It's the one time of year that I connect with my children on that special level where childhood innocence, awe and joy subside and it also brings me close to my grandpa again.

I miss him a lot. I wish he'd been around to see my daughter. Not that I don't feel him near a lot. Her birthday is coming up and to me she will always have this special connection to him. She was born on December 13th, on a Friday and that was always my grandpa's lucky day. He was discharged from the Army after WWII on that day.

So, as I close out today- I did work on my novel a little bit yesterday...wrote about 900 words or so..not as much as I would like, but that will change I'm sure.

Tune in tomorrow- I'll be blogging about my favorite Christmas movies and cartoons. Feel free to join in with me and tell me about yours!

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