Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Tis the Season!

It's happened.

The holiday season is upon us.

I've done a lot of thinking about what this holiday season will be like for my family, here's what I have so far:

Step 1: Intense slave driving, with prolonged periods of yelling and punishments, to ensure that my children finish their schoolwork in a peremptory manner so as not to put a damper on the actual holiday days. This course of action will put a damper on every other day, but I'm out of better ideas. I've found that my children don't respond to candy bribes as well as they used to, I blame Halloween. If you can't use candy to get your kids to behave, yelling is all that's left.

Step 2: Let my mother in law handle all things Thanksgiving related. This is key to my serenity and thankfully she seems to embrace this role. I will bring a turkey for my husband to help cook and probably some carrots. I will be deeply and eternally thankful that that is all that I will do. My son seems interested in learning the magic that makes the Thanksgiving meal happen. I will encourage Curly in his endeavors and give my full support. Some day he can be in charge of Thanksgiving dinner, for this I am also thankful. Mother-in-laws and kitchen loving sons are a true blessing from heaven.

Step 3: Avoid Black Friday and go to a hotel. That's right, you heard the big news here first, I'm skipping the biggest shopping day of the year. I blame my sister and the internet. My sister is my partner in all Black Friday crimes and she's going on vacation like the highfalutin girl about town that she is. Then there's the internet. Do you know what you can buy on there? Literally, anything. I have completed most of my shopping plus a great deal of unnecessary shopping (thanks Facebook targeted ads, you know me too well!) online this year. It's probably best if the spending stops now.

Oh what, you thought I was going to just skip over the hotel part? Unlikely. My husbands company had the good sense to book the annual Christmas Party at a wonderful resort with a killer employee deal encouraging us all to make a weekend of it. Consider me encouraged. 3 days and 2 nights of staycation bliss are headed my way next weekend. Bonus: It will probably cost the same as Black Friday usually does Double Bonus: We're counting it as part of the kids Christmas present. They seem fine with it. Can I get away with this every year?

Step 4: Decoration. It's hard to feel festive without the right amount of tinsel. What is the right amount? Zero. I hate tinsel. But I do love Christmas decorations. The inside and outside of my humble abode will be festooned and lit up enough for even astronauts to benefit from their glow. It's always wonderful once it's up but terrible trying to get it all there. Day drinking may become the norm around here. Oaths may be uttered. It's all a part of the process.

Step 5: Crafting. This is an essential part of any successful holiday season. At least it is in my manor. Curly is still saving for his school sponsored world travels so we've signed up for a craft fair in the hopes of accomplishing his fundraising goals and ridding my house of an overabundance of crafty goodness.  In the course of the first week of December I will probably craft myself into oblivion while watching every Christmas movie ever made. This O.D. of holiday cheer will temporarily grinchify me, but it's nothing that eggnog or apple cider can't cure.

Step 6: Parties. We don't get invited to many, but this is probably a good thing. We're hosting one early which will mean frantic scrubbing, organizing, baking and hiding clutter in places we won't find until next Christmas. It's strategic to host, it means my family has to help me clean the house. A clean house means I have the possibility of not going completely bat crazy this holiday season.

Step 7: The bliss. School will be out for several weeks. The house will be clean. Most regularly scheduled activities will be on break. My family and I will sit back and enjoy the fruits of all of our harried labors. There will be games. There will be food. There will be relaxation. This will become my mantra.

God seems to have made the modern holiday season exactly to match my manic ways. I thrive on the scrambling exhaustion that leads to the unscheduled bliss. It gives me plenty of time to reflect on the wonder of his gift to our world and plenty of things to ask him for forgiveness about. Scramble times always have me saying or doing something that I'm not proud of. Thankfully he's a forgiving God. I like to think my misadventures give him a good laugh. We're friends like that.

How's your holiday season looking?