I like the Christmas season. It can be a little stressful at times, but the outcome is good. My family has get togethers throughout the year, but the Christmas gathering always seems to be the best. I don't have any bad childhood memories of Christmas, and I am thankful to my parents for that. My mother did not have a very happy childhood, and therefore went out of her way to make sure her children did.
Christmas was always special. We were raised to understand the true meaning of Christmas, but we all know that when a child sees a mound of presents in front of them, that meaning becomes a little lost. So when all the wrapping paper, boxes and bows are cleaned up and the gift cards are located in the piles of discarded boring clothes we take a few moments and relay the true meaning.
Since I have had children and grandchildren of my own I have tried to pass the excitement of Christmas on to them. The shopping can be a little rough, but has been made easier throughout the years by shopping online. The decorating can be a little much, but when all is done it's nice to take a step back and smile. Christmas should not be a chore. I know, "tell that to the person hosting Christmas at their home". That is a chore. Shopping, cooking, cleaning and making sure everything turns out OK. My family is pretty easy to please and helpful. The outcome should be a room full of happy people who enjoy spending time together.
Now put the brakes on...Someone, or should I say several people are out to break my spirit this year.
- For 27 Christmas's I have been with my husband who's busy season of the year is Christmas. I've seen him stressed, tired and crabby to no end. I've done just about all the Christmas prep by myself minus the outside lights. Our lights are 1/2 done, yet boxes are scattered all over the basement. Figured he'd be working on them last night, but took to the couch instead.
- My mother-in-law is in her usual "There is no Christmas this year" mode. It's getting old and I'm getting tired of it. I've tried to be sympathetic in the past but it's the same thing every year. There's no money for presents. No one expects her to buy presents. If you buy her something she wants you to return it as she got you nothing. You explain to her that it doesn't matter over and over again. Something in the back of my mind tells me that she just wants to exchange or return whatever she received as she just doesn't like it.
- My sister-in-law is in her repetitive "I hate Christmas" mode. Another one with no money for gifts, however plenty of money for frivolous items. This one can get me to be a little bitter as I've purchased gifts for her children when there was a claim of no money only to see the brother-in-law well stocked on beer and other party products.
- My kids are arguing. I refuse to be in the middle of this as they are both adults. I will listen but refuse to pass judgement or become involved. This should make for a lovely Christmas day if this is not resolved. I listen to them and wonder what happened to make them so bitter toward each other. I'm not saying my parenting skills were right, but I seldom screamed at my kids. Tried talking things through and treating them both equally and fairly. Their father on the other hand favored my son and did not and still does not know how to talk to them. The phone calls I've been witness to are of him in a rage over something.
- I think I may pick up the 3 grandchildren and have a peaceful Christmas Day with them.
I hear there are plenty of movie theaters open for business on Christmas Day. After church and breakfast we may head to one.