Friday, December 24, 2010
The tree is up. The wrapping is done. I have a huge pot of Christmas Eve dinner borscht in the fridge, and the cards have all been sent. We are off to my parent's house for the major gift opening this afternoon, so come 2 o'clock Christmas will be here. But for now I am happy to be sitting by my laptop cuddled up in my robe, with my hair still damp from the shower.
Nik is watching 'Mary Poppins' in the next room, eating cheezies in his pajama top and underpants. On the floor can be found the contents of the couple of presents we let him open last night. Little things like toy cars and new books. Nothing needs batteries.
I got my Christmas present from my husband last night. A couple of new CDs, a small teapot, and clothes that don't fit... ;-) Looks like we will be braving the after-Christmas mall exchanges crowd once again. From me he got a new digital watch and a game. Actually, I gave him the game a few weeks ago after Nik saw the same one in a flyer, and told him, "Daddy? We have that game. That game is hiding." No surprises when a 3 year old is in on the secret, I guess. :-)
Christmas is quieter for us this year. About a week ago, I entered that stage of pregnancy when running up and down the stairs starts to seem like a major undertaking. Walking down the hall to put something away requires a cool-down and a 5 minute breather. Unloading and reloading the dishwasher may be the most productive part of my day. So there has been more sitting, more reading, more knitting. More cups of tea and movies. And much less decorating. No baking. No Christmas letter.
Nik did get to see Santa, but it was because my sister took him. He will be recieving a mountain of presents from extended family, but at home there will be only his stocking on Christmas morning. We are going to two Christmas dinners, at beautifully decorated homes. I am bringing the borscht, and the mashed potatoes. We seem to have found a balance between festivity and simplicity.
It has helped me to see the blessing of family and friends even clearer. We don't have to do it all to have it all. So often I am grateful that is not left to my husband and I to provide all the trappings of Nik's childhood, or even of our own lives. Over the years we have received so much, from cups of coffee and conversation, to money to help up pay for our wedding or first home. Children's toys, clothing and books, baby equipment, computer parts, meals, lodging... even air fare has been given to us. People have shoveled our driveway, mowed our lawn, washed our dishes, and folded our laundry. I think of where we would be without the helping hands of those around us, and I can't believe how much I so often take for granted. How much poorer we would be without them, in all ways. How much less we would be able to offer to our son.
But with our lives enriched by the generosity of others, we have easily found our way to another merry little Christmas. Wishing each of you the same.