I love the holidays. I am sorry to see them go. I believe I could become one of those recluses who keeps their lights and tree up all year long just to keep the spirit alive, and have the home owners association fine me at the same time.
I love Christmas and all the festivities that accompany it. In the past I use to get annoyed at the fact that the retail businesses would set up Santa’s workshop in stores shortly after Labor Day, but now I love that the Holiday arrives earlier and earlier every year; It just means I get to revel in that carnival atmosphere a little longer.
Although they start the Christmas phantasm following the August back to school sales, I still love that I can retreat to the basement and sort through my recently added purchases from last years after Christmas sales. I don’t know what it is that triggers me to run to the nearest Target or K-mart and thumb through their empty shelves of the previous years leftovers. It is such a gratification to grab a box of netted multi lights for 75% off. Ohhh…. and hold me back from the singing Elvis ornaments…..I am so glad I didn’t weaken one day and fork out the full price for that…. yes, I am an ornament junkie.
I have been seen rifling through end caps located in a targeted area that offer ginormous bins loaded with discarded Christmas paraphernalia in hopes of finding that Lost Ark to add to my temple of doom & gloom that surrounds my house pre- Holiday.
I have had a a house full of people these last few weeks, and enjoyed every minute of it. I love the hustle -n-flow of the teens traipsing through my house leaving trails of candy cane pieces that had set up residence in the couch. And let’s not forget to mention the patches of dark residue embedded in the carpet fibers, which I mistook for “doggie surprises”, but later turned out to be traces of a Tootsie Roll…………Thank God it wasn’t the other way around.
I am going to miss wading knee deep in the aftermath of torn wrapping paper, and the sticky bows that adhere themselves onto my clothing and go unnoticed until the cashier at the return line in Macy*s peels it off my back like a piece of stinky lint.
My favorite Holiday episode is fighting with colorful tissue remnants stuck to my shoe. I hated the looks I received when I exited a Sear’s Ladies Room one day, when I was met with countless stares and titters as my Jimmy Choo waved a white flag from it’s three inch heel. As I hoofed it past the customer service line, I found myself conjuring up a soliloquy to numerous strangers giggling behind their basket of returns :
“No, really….it’s Christmas tissue……really.…it is...honest…I..I have proof, check the gummy outline on the sole from last years Scotch tape fiasco…”.
The part of Christmas I tend to wrestle the most with is the Tree. For most of my life we would always indulge in a Real Christmas tree. A Tree that you would stuff family members into a mini van and venture out to a far-a-way farm to spend hours in the cold choosing the right tree to fit the family room. I love the smell of Pine in the house and spending days trying to remove the pitch from my hands. I especially loved the endless upkeep involving never ending vacuuming of piled- up pine needles. Pine needles that continued to show up throughout the summer. In fact I think I found a needle from Y2K.
I know this because it was then that I switched to the fake trees. They are very life like and are all inclusive. No need to” just add water…..”. You take them out of a big box and they pop up and plug in. They have Pine Spray should you miss the scent of a wooded area. The problem is when it’s all over and stuffing that little faker back into its original box. I find myself in a half nelson with the branches as I roll the tree into the box and ask three people to sit on it until it settles down. And…I still find myself grabbing the vacuum to suck up Fake pine needles.
I have a friend who has a fake tree in its own Bag. Her Holiday regime is met with:
First: Open a bottle of wine and pour a glass …
Second: Open bag and raise slowly from the bottom up and lo and behold an instant tree with lights and ornaments.
Third: Bottoms Up! And sit and enjoy the sparkling Spruce while listening to your neighbors cursing at their Evergreens to “stand up straight”.
Yes I love the holidays. The beginning, middle, and end. I love the aftermath of de- Ornamenting the tree and placing them back into their bulbous home and dragging the Tubs to the basement to stow them in an area that is only reachable by a ladder. I love climbing back up the stairs to the bare space in the corner where a naked tree stands pointing it’s fabricated projections at me dangling two forgotten red balls…..
I love arguing with the wintered rose bushes that are holding the outdoor net lights hostage in their thorns. Every year I keep thinking I’ll return into the house unscathed, but, inevitably I always lose that war of the roses and end up looking like something the cat dragged in……carrying Christmas lights.
The one thing that was different this year was my daughter having to leave to return to school. The time seemed to fly by this holiday break and before I knew it she was packing her bags and loading them into the car for the trip back to Happy Valley. It seems like only yesterday she arrived with baskets of laundry and suitcases filled a mile high with clothing spewing down a mountainside of of unwashed unmentionables.
Oh..it is such a bittersweet moment when the Holidays end at my house. One is saddled with the leftovers of Christmas residuals and the minor deflation of the Spirit gone by the wayside until next year. I watched through the window of my daughters empty room as the car pulled down the driveway heading down the road back to her future , and I felt a pang of emptiness as I retreated from the window to start the year with some post Christmas cleaning. I turned around to head towards her closet and there was an unopened gift my daughter had left behind for me……………
The basket of dirty laundry…….ohhh…. Happy New Year…
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