Join me on Facebook, too!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Christmastime Already? Sheesh!

Okay. I've been slacking off in writing my posts. November events blasted me out of my routine, rocketing past Thanksgiving, and landing me in the land of elves and Santa. Holy schmoly! What just happened?

I know I'm not alone in feeling clubbed and dazed. Book events filled my calendar, and November left many of us numb from a shared experience. (I'm not going to mention the "T" word, or anything about a shocking "E," or, well, you get the idea.) Time marches on. I'm a mom in the middle of an active family, so I feel pressure to get in gear and make Christmas happen.

Past Christmases were a blur of school events, office parties, shopping, baking, and decorating the house. I'll admit to being a little high octane when it came to making Christmas memories. The sleight of hand my husband and I perfected about Christmas Eve magic had our kids believing in Santa well past the average age of enlightenment. Their refrain? There must be a Santa because no way mom and dad would buy all that stuff and no way in heck could we hide it all until Christmas morning. Boo yeah! Mission accomplished.

But this year is different. My family will have one empty seat at the dinner table. It's a fact I'm having a hard time accepting.

Two of my children have graduated college and my youngest is a freshman. Asking them what they want Santa to bring makes them roll their eyes, and with no kids in the local schools, holiday concerts, bake sale fund raisers, and classroom parties are things of the past. I'll confess to being grumpy about decorating my home, too.

This season, the one filled with joy and love, is teaching me to find the joy in my life and focus on the love. I will eventually bake, shop, wrap, and decorate, but I'm refusing to do so when it feels like a "have to" instead of a "want to." I want to enjoy this holiday with my family. And I will.

This Christmas will not be a blur of activities. I am choosing to spend my time wisely and carefully, with people I love. I am going to take the time needed to show how I feel. Maybe we'll hike together or eat warm ginger bread, made from my grandmother's recipe, dripping with melting butter. When we do, I'll listen to their favorite Christmas memories and ask them about their hopes for the future. I don't think anyone's going to notice I didn't wrap a bunch of presents or I served a store-bought quiche instead of making my own. If they do notice? I'll invite them to talk with me while I wrap or cook. I want my time with them.

My second novel, "The Troubles," won best fiction award at EQUUS Film Festival in NYC
I realize that finding joy is like looking at yourself through a fun house mirror. Depending upon your perspective, features dominate your view or shrink away. I'm surrounded with joy. I just need to decide to keep my focus there.

Part of my joy was learning that "The Troubles" won a literary award! I may write a whole post on my November events, I may not. For now, I'm sharing a little bit of my joy with you.

If I don't post again for a couple of weeks, please know I wish you a wonderful holiday season and a joy filled new year.