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A Spit and Glue Christmas

We have all had at least one of those Christmases… We are surrounded…nay bombarded… by images of perfect holiday bliss and cheer, but in our own spheres can barely lift our heads in the morning thinking of everything that just is not going the way we planned and trying to come up with ways to salvage the season while juggling all the other balls we have in the air (not to insult the fine graceful art of juggling…in reality this looks more like someone just desperately snatching and throwing balls up in the air, trying not to let too many hit the ground. (Wait, some of these balls might not even be mine!) With our recent move and other happenings, this is definitely one of those Christmases for us…held together with spit and glue.

A couple of weekends ago, I noticed that Little Man seemed a bit down. When I asked him what was up, he told me it didn’t feel like Christmas this year. When I asked him why, he mentioned that fact that we did not have a tree. FRICK! The tree. How does one forget the tree? Where do they sell trees around here? Where the heck are we going to even put a tree? There are still boxes of kitchen all over the house! Found a place that still had trees, loaded up the family in the car…and now we have a mostly decorated tree in the office.

…maybe they will help decorate…

In my ongoing quest for the Mother-of-the-Year award, I totally forgot to make monkey bread for my Moon’s class party (I was supposed to make cookies, but am in the middle of a huge kitchen renovation and we compromised). The kicker is that I did remember to make it for her sister’s class a few days earlier (way to spur on that sibling rivalry, Mom). In my defense, between those two events, the dog sliced his paw pad open and ran through the house “decorating” the floors in Christmas red, and we once again loss the use of some appliances due to just one more hiccup in the renovation (it is not a good sign when your contractor dubs yours the “dark cloud house”). Still, I felt horrible about it…so I threw together some reindeer candy canes for her to take to her teacher and for the kids to give out to friends, because it isn’t really Christmas until Mamma burns her fingers with the glue gun (“that was the only day we were supposed to bring snacks, Mamma.” “Just take the freaking candy cane reindeer…please.”)

It just isn’t Christmas until Mamma burns her fingers with the glue gun.

After a trip to Zoo Lights and out to the mall to shop, my Sun mentioned that it still did not really feel like Christmas this year. “Is it the warmer weather?” I asked. The answer was “I guess…kinda…and the Christmas village isn’t even up.” FRICK! The Christmas village! I know where that box is… I think. And…voilà:

“Yes, I can see that it is wrinkled…we are going with an ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ Christmas theme. That is too a thing! Well, it’s a thing now.”

This is definitely a Spit and Glue Christmas. The cards are nowhere near being all sent out (I was soooo doing them early this year so people would have our new address…ha…ha…ha), I can’t make our traditional Lebkuchen cookies until I have a functioning kitchen (though the dough is ready to go), the kids are still figuring out their new schools and are missing their friends (me, too, guys), the packages are all stacked in the hall waiting to be sent but I can’t leave the injured, grumpy dog in the house to go to the post office while people are working in the kitchen (well, I could in theory…but I rather enjoy having a bedroom door and furniture without gnaw marks). We are trying to get some festive activities in here and there, and it is nice to get to walk on the beach in weather that feels more like spring than winter, but I agree with the kids…it doesn’t feel like Christmas in some ways.

This morning, while the girls and I were gathered around the kitchen island getting breakfast and moving everything out of the path of the drywall that would be coming down later in the day, I asked about favorite Christmas memories. My Moon immediately chimed in, recalling the year that her hamster, Leafy,  magically appeared in her room. I remember that Christmas! It was my Sun’s first Christmas…the one when she got pink eye and spread it, like holiday cheer, all through the household. That was the year of the kidney stones, gallstones, and mono. Oh boy do I remember that spit and glue Christmas.

My Sun mentioned something about a Christmas when she spent the day dressing up in costumes and putting on little plays: the year she woke to a cute little wardrobe for her costumes (not the most pleasant thing to put together). I remember that Christmas, too! We were living in that house we were renting because we couldn’t sell the one in the state from which we had moved. It was back during the housing crash. Between trips out to make sure the house (which was 7 hours away by car) was ok and the ups and downs of showing…and then not selling, we had done our best to piece together a festive little family Christmas. My grandmother had also passed away earlier that year so we had made the 15 hour road trip to my parents’ house to attend her memorial service and then turned around to make the drive home on Christmas Eve so that my husband could be back at work after a Christmas Day on call. I remember it as a difficult Christmas… definitely one held together by spit and glue.

So, you see, in the end the kids most likely don’t remember the spit and glue Christmases as being anything but… Christmas. Heck, mine remember two of our hardest as being the best of all! Thinking back to my favorite Christmases growing up, I am sure that my parents have a whole different memory of them and the crazy things going on at the time, while they tried to paste together the family holiday (I seem to recall a story about the dog eating all the edible presents in the car while we were traveling to or from relatives, and the tree being tied up with a rope so that it wouldn’t tip all the way over).

Anyway, I have to sign off now. The cat is in the Christmas village, Little Man is home from his last day of school before vacation with a fever, and the dog somehow slipped out of the cone of shame. This Christmas is definitely going to need more glue…

Happy Holidays to All from The Moon, The Sun, and Little Man… and from me!

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