Monday, December 27, 2010

Aftermath and Reflection

The days following Christmas are always kind of funny. Not funny as in ha ha, but just a little odd. We’re always so pumped up and excited about how exciting Christmas Eve and Christmas Day were that we’re almost stunned into silence when it’s all over. I mean, how many times do you return to work or run into someone while you’re out and about and hear the cursory, “How was your Christmas?” And how many times do you reply, “Oh, it was really nice! How was yours?” And their response is, invariably, “Oh, it was really nice!” Sometimes more gets said, but I doubt anyone’s really listening, as they’ve gone on to revisit their own happy memories inside their heads as the other is speaking theirs out loud. 

So, I have my blog. I can tell whoever wants to listen about our holiday…

…about a child knowing that Santa would be there that night, helping to put decorated Christmas cookies on a festive ceramic plate as I poured a glass of milk, about her insisting that they be placed on the mantle (“chimney!”) instead of on the floor by the tree.

…about a child waking in the morning to discover two wrapped packages waiting at the foot of her bed, a glimpse of what awaited her downstairs (oh, who am I kidding? She woke up wet, calling to us to take her to the bathroom before she even saw the gifts, so the presents had to wait – she was no less excited by the delay, however).

…about how wide and sparkling her eyes became when she saw that Santa had eaten the cookies and drunk the milk (“Santa eat cookies and drink milk!”).

…about the unwrapping of the presents, and the need to open and play with every toy and read every book (rushed by mommy and daddy who knew that we’d be there all day and dinner would be late if we let her take too much time between gifts).

…about the impromptu drive Samantha and I took at 8:30am to look for fresh bread for dinner, snow flurries falling fast on the car’s windshield, a child’s patience ebbing as every supermarket appeared to be closed. (After giving up for the moment, I ventured out again in the afternoon to find a single Safeway open in another town, loaves of fresh-baked crusty bread ready to go and still warm in their paper wrapping, employees cheerfully basking in double-time pay.)

…about the aromas of garlic, mushrooms, thyme, rosemary and roast lamb filling the rooms, warming against the gray and chilly day outside (Steve is a truly amazing cook, slaving in the kitchen for the better part of the day, but turning out a perfect meal!).

…about the arrival of family and friends for the very first Christmas hosted at our house, the opening of even more presents, and the sharing of a traditional English Christmas dinner, complete with paper hats from gold crackers and a flaming Christmas pudding for dessert.

…about the angelic child – the one who enjoyed every minute of the day, who provided endless entertainment to the rest of us, and who sat uncomplaining and downright cheery through all three courses of dinner.

...about staying in jammies on Sunday, no need to do anything.

And so we begin to decompress, to breathe a sigh of relief that all of the hectic fury of the season has come to a close for another year, still nursing the euphoria and still feeling that little bit of sadness that it’s over. It’s not about presents, although they certainly are a fun tradition. It’s all about how the season makes you feel. Christmas has an inherent warmth and glow that is just there. I know that there are many, many more Christmas memories to be made at Christmases-future, and that the next year will go by even more quickly than the last. Hopefully this will serve as a reminder to enjoy and appreciate the quiet seasons as well, before the next busy summer that marks the halfway point to the next Christmas.

I hope you all enjoyed your holidays, and look forward to catching up on your blogs shortly!

14 comments:

Rochelle said...

So glad you all had a great Christmas. I can just imagine Sammi's beautiful eyes as she realizes her cookies and milk have been eaten...truly priceless! Thanks for sharing.

Chromosomally Enhanced said...

sounds like a perfect day!! I love that Santa filled the day with great memories!! have a wonderful New Year!! smiles

Lacey said...

My favorite part of Christmas is the traditions. The ones we've done for years, and we'll continue to do!

heather said...

Your Christmas sounded perfect! Merry Christmas to you and your family! Is it ok to still wish you s merry Christmas even after it's over? Hope so!

Kelly said...

Treasured moments!! Glad to hear your day was MERRY:) Wishing you and your a wonderful New Year!!

Jenny said...

I really enjoyed reading this, it was all said so beautiful, I almost felt I was there!

Kelli said...

It sounds so wonderful! So happy to hear you had such a fantastic day!

my life: said...

A lovely post!
I'm finding myself in a tough spot this year. My tree is typically down by the 26th...this year is different. Only having a few more days of my kids home...I kinda want to extend it all...not let it end!
SO glad you had a great holiday!

Patti said...

I can't believe I am just now becoming a follower:) No wonder I wasn't getting updates on my blogger dashboard! My daughter Mackenzie and I are in love with your beautiful princess:)

Michelle said...

what great memories you captured of Christmas! and it sounds like you had a most wonderful day!

RobMonroe said...

Hope your decompression has continued at a steady pace and not all at once. Glad Christmas was all you wanted it to be!

evrfwd said...

What lovely snippets to your Christmas. So glad you had a wonderful holiday. Happy new year!!!

Anna said...

Sounds like a WONDERFUL christmas!! Hope your new years is just as wonderful xo

Melissa M said...

Sounds like a wonderful Christmas, and I can't wait for all those magical, exciting Christmas memories!