Are you one of those people who start getting ready for Christmas before or at Thanksgiving?
Not me. I'm lucky to be ready for Christmas BY Christmas. I pat myself on the back every year if I have one gift or the decorations up by Christmas Eve. It's kinda my Christmas Miracle. lol
Yesterday The boy brought some boxes out for me from storage. Most of the major stuff. Enough stuff. I went through boxes, pulled out things and got busy. Not too busy, don't get me wrong. I put up some minimal decorations and made the house a little festive...you know, the big Santa wreath
Some garland here and there...some ribbons and some candles. The little 3 ft. fiber optic Christmas tree I bought about 10 years ago when I finally surrendered to cats . Cats who love nothing more than to knock decorations off the tree from the ground up to about 2 foot from the ground and then climb up the inside of the trunk and sleep in the branches. IF the tree doesn't fall all the way over in the meantime. Sigh...
So, just enough decorations. Looks mildly decorative, but not like Father Christmas came and threw up all over everything. Enough.
I even came in and put a small wreath of silver baubles and holly on Buddha's head and some holly garland around the table. This is a bad picture of him, but it is titled Buddha Celebrates too.
And so it is...the celebration begins.
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It has been cold cold cold here. This morning is 12 with a wind chill of 0. We got a dusting of snow, but nothing like surrounding areas got. The ground is still white, because even though there has been some sun (and this morning is VERY sunny) it's frigid. Enough snow to look pretty but not enough to make the roads bad. yay.
I am heading south this evening with a carload of newly sober women to go to a potluck and speaker that will feature Yours Truly. I agreed to do it weather permitting, because it is about an hour and a half south of here. At night. It will be fine, nothing predicted for today but sunshine and Arctic temperatures. I do have to get off my lazy duff soon and get a spice cake in the oven. I will make a chicken and rice casserole for the Irishman's supper...it will cook slowly all day long and make the house all nice smelling for him when he gets home. I will be long gone by then.
I have a recipe that I got when I was first married from my childhood neighbor, Mary. I got it because 1) she knew it was my favorite and 2) because it is one of those old farmwife cakes that you ALWAYS have the ingredients on hand for. It's an Oatmeal Cake. It has a brown sugar, nuts and coconut broiled icing on top. I make it every once in a while when I can dig out the recipe for a potluck and there is never any of it left to come back home. That's a successful potluck dish, in my book.
So...we don't buy a lot of Christmas gifts. I make some things, but not a lot. I donate to a couple of charities this time of year...the Women's Shelter or something local that "adopts" a family or two for the holidays. Like most people, we don't have a lot to spend...unlike most people, we refuse to go into debt buying for Christmas, so nothing gets bought unless we have the extra cash in hand to pay for it. And extra means after the bills are paid. lol But at this stage of life, we don't really need anything, and have most things we want. So it's not like this is a big sacrifice on our part, don't get me wrong. It's not.
The older I get, the more the nature of this winter holiday changes. I kind of like that. We will usually get each other a book or two and maybe a dvd. Something we both like, usually. Although one year I got a great deal on a boxed set of John Wayne for the Irishman who loves him. Me--not so much. lol It's simple. We eat well, we relax and we stay grateful for the little things in life that keep us contented and happy. And on either Christmas Eve or on New Years Eve (usually the latter) we splurge on a big expensive meal of steak and lobster. I buy the stuff and make it here, with a fancy dessert (Creme Brulee) and sparkling grape juice for an extra touch of special. And it reminds us that we really do have the finer things in life, right here on Honeysuckle Hill. And THAT, my friends, is the best gift of all.
Well, the husband just walked in the door (9 AM)-- he is sick...vomiting and horrid. Home from work after being there less than 2 hours. Poor baby...like most men, he doesn't do sick well. Hopefully he'll just go bed and stay there. I thought last night as we were watching a movie that he felt hot when he leaned against me...he said he was fine then. Not today apparently.
Better go see what I can do...