By the time you read this Christmas will be approximately thirty-two days away. That is 768 hours.
This is not a drill.
These statistics are true IF you celebrate on the actual day. I am a traditionalist and have celebrated Christmas on Dec. 25 and Thanksgiving on the dedicated Thursday in November for my entire life. I didn’t have to share holidays when the kids were growing up. Mr. Wonderful and I just reveled in our magical holidays with immediate and extended family. My in-laws made it easy from day one. Since I have known them they have celebrated Christmas on Christmas Eve. It’s magical. Then Christmas day was spent at home with my mother joining us. We have enjoyed Thanksgiving on the proper day since forever. I would no more have Thanksgiving on a Sunday than I would have it in the middle of July.
Until now. We have now entered into the phase of life which I shall call “Holiday Adjacent Celebrations.”
With grown adult “children” we have to consider their work schedules and in-laws. No longer can I simply assume they are all mine until holiday vacation ends. I now share custody of GirlWonder with her lovely in-laws (they really are). I also deal with work schedules. Being a super smart electrical engineer and a nurse, respectively, mean that BoyWonder and his fiance may work holidays. I mean, I get it. When lives hang in the balance it’s hard to argue that SOMEONE has to work in the hospitals on holidays.
That said I would like to shout out to all the businesses that seem to think they must stay open on holidays. The aforementioned medical care and maybe some gas stations aside, I’m not sure I get it. What are y’all doing out there that is so life-altering that you cannot close for one day? Are doorbuster sales on towels and teapots really all that important? I am told that some folks really love overtime so I guess they have that going for them. As for me and my house, we will serve copious amounts of food and try to stay home.
Instead of being deeply disappointed, I am choosing to embrace the theory of EXTRA CELEBRATION. We will enjoy our traditional “designated day” celebrations and then enjoy MORE celebrations, love, food, family and fun on alternate days. I am eager to visit their homes and see them making their memories and traditions too.
My mother has passed on the assignment to make her amazing deviled eggs this year. I feel pressure. I make the entire meal from turkey to every last side dish, yeast roll, and Jell-O salad. Yes, I said salad. I’m from flyover country and we love our gelatin side dishes. GirlWonder makes the amazing pumpkin pie. I refused to raise children who cannot cook. My mother, until this year, always brought deviled eggs. Now, she has informed me she’s not feeling it so the task shall be mine. My family may want to brace for “practice batch” eggs.
I admit, I struggle. There is a moment when my son says “I won’t be home for the holidays” that MY inner child wants to tantrum. Then I get a grip and remember that healthy birds fly — and sometimes have to work on Christmas day.
Whatever day we get together with our children, God willing, it will be worthy of celebration. We have more to be thankful for than ever before. We will enjoy our traditional foods, laughter, love, and, I hope, a pretty decent deviled egg.
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