I am actually sitting here in my PJ's still, which if you know me at all is REALLY weird, lol....I am NOT a lounger in the morning, and staying in my jammies usually means I am VERY sick. My kids have always given me a hard time about this as I spring (as best as a gal "can" spring with arthritic knees, haha) out of my bed in the morning REALLY early (usually before 6) and make my bed (if my hubby isn't still in it, haha) and get immediately into the shower. I dress, do my hair and make-up, and have my morning tea and devotions ALL BEFORE 7 am. I pick up my house, unload my dish washer, make a few visits to all of you, start laundry (if I am doing it) have my breakfast and plan my day all before 8. Generally I leave time about then to talk to my mom for a while on the phone. And I do this rather or not my house is full of company, or it is Christmas Day or not. I am just a "morning" person. But this morning I decided to just RELAX...haha...I did strip beds, and start laundry and picked things up, but have spent the rest of the morning catching up on the phone with some people, and catching up with the Lord. I have sadly neglected my quiet time with Him these last several days as we have been soo busy. Why it is that time with Him is what I eliminate first when I get too busy I can never be sure, but let's just say I have found myself in this position more than once in my lifetime. How grateful I am that He is always there waiting for me, and welcomes me back with open arms and forgiveness for my "busy" days that have kept me away. He really is the ONLY constant thing in my life that NEVER changes and is ALWAYS there for me to count on. Loves me NO MATTER WHAT....
Our Christmas was different this year. Wonderful... but different. I can't really explain "why" because it went beyond the fact that we were in a different house after 25 years, though it was certainly a BIG part of it. I think it was one of the reasons I was so excited about Christmas this year and was soo wanting all my decorations just right and everything to "seem the same"...even though it just isn't. I don't like change, never have, and I am big on tradition. We had created soo many memories and soo many traditions at our old house I knew it would just have to be a little weird doing it all somewhere else. And it just kind of was....I tried, but there just wasn't room for all of my old favorites. And while I certainly didn't miss then really, I missed the kids enjoying them. (I know I am kind of weird on this stuff...please bear with me, lol) We sat the tables up, (it took 3) and tried to organize everything the day before....the idea was to save time on Christmas Day.....but all it really did was make Christmas Eve a LONG day of work for my hubby and me. Now it did LOOK beautiful, the goodies were plentiful (I ended up baking them all up on Christmas Eve too) and the food the next day was yummy. There was LOTS of presents under the tree and everything was clean and ready for the next day so that no one would want for anything. But my poor hubby and I went to bed EXHAUSTED, lol. Christmas morning was wonderful as Melody was here with her husband Mike and we had a nice big breakfast and opened our gifts to each other leisurely while we sipped coffee and tea. We chatted and visited and sooo enjoyed our time together. We showered and dressed (actually I already was, haha, everyone else had stayed in their jammies and robes) put our dinner in the oven and waited for the rest of them to arrive. I was feeling brilliant about this time for doing soo much of the work the day before. It however was sadly short lived, as the rest of the day passed in a blur. I can't honestly tell you what happened....Suddenly lots of people were there. The presents were not even all opened, the meat was done but the potatoes weren't. There seemed to be little ones everywhere and suddenly my house seemed MUCH smaller than I thought. We didn't have the room we have always had in the past, and it was very apparent. There weren’t enough chairs and people were sitting on the floor. The big tables took up too much room. The grandkids no longer have their own playroom and area, and were weaving in and out of the tables and the bodies sitting on the floor, as they tried to play, so blissfully unaware that there wasn't much room to do so. My poor mother was there and she was VERY sick as her asthma had flared up the day before. I knew the confusion and chaos had to be getting to her as it was getting to me. My boys all want to just sit and visit with Melody as they miss her as much as I do and get very little chance to do so. I "TRIED" to visit and enjoy everyone, but felt like I didn't really see or talk to anyone hardly at all. My wonderful husband did ALL of the kitchen work as I my knees were NOT doing well at all, and never did sit down to actually eat his dinner. Now he assured me he ate WAY too much, and that he had multiple offers for help, but he honestly just wanted everyone to visit and enjoy each other. If this makes him sound like a saint, all I can say is I have been telling people for years that he is. It is just honestly how he is. Oh, and did I mention that he did a lot of that while carrying either Donatella or Cody around on his hip. How they love their Grandpa. How I wish I'd taken a pic. of that. I forgot to take any pictures at all (though I do have a few "pre" pictures before anyone was here which I will show you) and so the day passed with no pictures to capture the moments. My sister Diane did take several on her wonderful camera and I will steal some of those if she posts them. And just as suddenly as it started, it was over. Another Christmas has come and gone and I decided to focus on the fact that everyone enjoyed a good meal, enjoyed one another's company, and had a good time. But I will do MANY things differently now that I have been forced to see that things have changed....We will NOT have a sit down dinner complete with china and crystal again but rather cold ham, various cold salads, dinner rolls and MAYBE baked beans, lol, and ALL on paper plates, plastic silverware and paper cups. People can eat (if they want to) WHEN they manage to finally get their various families here ~ not all together. OH, and no present opening on Christmas day at all. I will do what my mom did for years....I soo understand now why she did it. Jeff & I will travel around from family to family in the days before Christmas, enjoying each family on their own as we share a meal and exchange presents. That will leave Christmas Day for us to all gather together and visit and enjoy each other, play games etc. Sounds MUCH better huh? And sooo obvious you'd think I'd have done it this year. But like I said....I have always been soo slow to change things up. But we have been blessed with a BIG family that continues to grow, and the time for change is here.
I did enjoy LOTS of time with Melly while they have been here for the past week. I treasured every minute and we chatted and visited to our little hearts content. I even blew dried her hair a couple of times for her, haha....It is soo long now and as I have always said I am just a frustrated "wanna be" hair dresser. I love doing her hair. They left early this morning, and I will admit I did spend a few minutes in tears. Not sure when ahe will be back, but hopefully it won't be too long. I did praise God that I was well the entire time she was here, but MANY it seemed were not doing too well on Christmas, so hopefully I will STAY that way, haha... Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and are enjoying this SHORT week before another long week-end. I am not in my usual hurry to get the decorations down. Soo not me, and again, I am not sure why. Guess it just kind of goes along with the feel of this "different" Christmas.
aAll of these tables did not include the teen-agers who were sitting at our bar, Mike & Mel who got assigned the coffee table, or the two babies Cody & Donatella (who were on various laps).... really quite the crowd. Did I mention that the prime rib was PERFECT? And the garlic mashed potatoes did not quite make it around to everyone so a couple of people had to have quick microwave baked potaotes, the green beans were REALLY good, the lime jello salad we have every year (no matter what the rest of the menu is) was as good as ever, I FORGOT to put out the Ceaser Salad, and every last yummy roll was eaten?? Just so you know....haha
The candy table
The cookie selection....all the pies were in the fridge...
These are the new carolers my hubby got me for Christmas this year (along with a new cell phone which I might never know how to work, haha, but my kids all want me to be able to "text" them all the time) I have had my eye on these darling little carolers for years and years but I am quite certain I would have never bought them for myself. I LOVE them, and him!