Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Talk Thursday: If This Is The Holidays, Why Do I Feel…

The holidays were great. We had a family Christmas gathering the weekend before Christmas, bringing together my daughter, our grandson, and Ducky’s daughters and their significant others. Normally I’d not break it down that, I consider Ducky’s daughters mine, he looks at Psam as his daughter and while there have been problems, it works. This year I went the easy route, dips, guacamole, nibbles, Psam made her famous Pico De Gallo (I’m in seventh heaven) and then pizza from the local Abby’s. Sunday morning we ransack our stockings, then pile into the cars and breakfasted at our favorite omelet place. Afterwards we went home and open presents. Then two third of them can’t get out of the house fast enough. It works.

We had a smaller Christmas celebration this year for several reasons, but first and foremost… I had a breakdown last year at Christmas time. Ducky threatened to cancel our Christmas gathering this year, but Psam chipped in and was a huge help. I scaled back my cooking and all was good. To me Christmas is all about family, it wouldn’t have been Christmas without Psam and Burp, my mom and grandmother. Ducky’s family is always welcomed, as are all holiday orphans, but they all have their own families and traditions, and the girls are required (at the ages of 30 and 36) to be at their mother’s for Christmas. Let me stop now and thank my parents for urging all their children to create their own traditions – they rarely requested a family Christmas.

My father was born to a very poor family in the back hills of West Virginia, my mother to a family of standing and modest wealth in Pasadena, CA, despite the vast difference in their personal experiences they made the holidays work and taught us it’s not the present but the thought that counts. My sister, mother, Psam, and myself often make our gifts. This year Psam and I spent Christmas Eve beading the last of our bracelets for gifting. Believe it or not I was a wee bit worried about giving such a small gift, second- guessing myself and not giving the recipients enough credit. I may be new at making beaded bracelets but I enjoy it, they are pretty and wearable, I crafted each to reflect the person recieving.

Psam gave me several unique wire wrapped heart beads she’d picked up that day in Eugene. The new beads gave me the opportunity to try multi-piece bracelets. The turned out pretty kewl, my grandmother really seemed to like hers.

The one bad thing that happened was Arlo’s gluttony for anything edible- preferably something to which he is allergic, struck. Sunday morning when the house was quite, Ducky and I were doing various chores in opposite sides of the house Arlo got into my closet and ate 8 ounces of chocolate covered espresso beans. Hmm,mmm lip smacking good if his smacking lips and lapping tongue were any indication. Hey, it was all good though, he hadn’t ravished my Peeps! Not for lack of trying, one corner of the wrapper was definitely dog mauled. Butthead, stay away from my Peeps! I mean, sheesh, he got a bag of dried apple slices, a bag of banana chips, and a knotted rawhide in his stocking – what more does a dog need?

In recent years I think I let the stress and demand of the holidays get to me. This year I took back the joy and simplicity of the season. It was a great holiday season, replete family, friends, Christmas socks (pictures to come), a brand new Kahlua Cali label
that was a last minute spate of inspiration (I think I’ll make this one permanent I like it that much), and dog mauled Chocolate Mousse Peeps – It was Christmas and I feel fabulous!