Friday, December 13, 2013

Busy, busy... and a few Christmas ponderings

I love and hate the Christmas season. I love the holiness of it, the time of preparation for the gift that we celebrate on Christmas day, remembering that tiny baby born so long ago in such primitive circumstances. I love the decorating, the trees, and feeling of good will... I love people saying good-bye with a "Merry Christmas". I love choosing (or making) gifts for people who are special to me. I love Christmas carols...

I hate the rest of it... the endless shopping, the shameless advertising with the push to always buy more, buy bigger. I hate Black Friday (which now starts on Thursday... Thanksgiving!). I hate the gaudiness we've created around what should be a holy day.

But now with less than two weeks before Christmas, the shopping is done, the gifts are wrapped (except a few that haven't arrived yet), and I feel the real Christmas spirit settling upon the house. I've been a little surprised this year at how much easier all the preparations are now that the kids are older. When K was 4 (she's now 26) we started taking foster babies, and got M the next year. From the minute he entered the house life has been challenging... he's been high need (HIGH need!) and his needs didn't decrease as he got older, they just changed... But now, finally, he's mostly stable psychiatrically (in other words most days he's stable... reachable... reasonable... with just occasional bad spells) and medically he's doing ok (we've finally figured out ways to mostly manage the gastroparesis with diet and OTC products) and he's become a fairly predictable, agreeable person. It's been amazing to me how much easier it is to shop for a Christmas gift (or 10!) or get some wrapping or decorating done with him older and doing well. It's been decades since I've had this much freedom...

It's very  nice, I could get used to this. :)

On today's agenda? Call Grandma and Grandpa (Joe's folks) and find out when the big white elephant exchange is (it's a big family, with just kids and grandkids there are 54 of us!), call my cousin and invite her to Christmas dinner, and call S's foster mom to confirm those Christmas plans. With the rest of the day I have a little upcycle project I've been excited to start working on....

No,  I can't say what it is... it might end up under the tree on Christmas morning, so it has to stay secret!

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