PDA

View Full Version : It's that time of year...



Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 01:01 AM
When the pressure is on. I just got back from trying to find a fresh tree to decorate and the tree shark wanted $35.00 for a little Charlie Brown tree. That was quite discouraging. He tried to tell me it was a "special kind of tree". I wonder if he had any clue to my thoughts as I was thinking, not in my life time buddy. So I left without it and felt really deflated.

Everyone is so doggone cheerful, ain't they? :) Sometimes that can be a bit wearing on my last nerve but then I try to remind myself why they are so cheerful. And I've asked myself, why am I not? After all:

I love Christmas and pretty sparkly lights and tinsel and the whole nine yards. When I went out to run a few errands this morning I admired the light pole decorations that my city has just put up. I think of the streets of Rapid City, S.D. where I grew up and remember what it was like to be a kid and the excitement I felt.

So, I decided I needed to remember the things I do to celebrate this time of year and how important it is to slow down and reflect on what's real and what's not.

During December, I love sitting in front of my tree and looking at all the ornaments that have been accumulated over the years. I have this tin bell, like the one in It's a Wonderful Life, that belonged on my grandmother's tree and every year, I am reminded of her traditions.

I remember her teaching me that when we bake pies for Christmas that we are to poke holes in the top of the crust in the shape of the star of Bethlehem and sprinkle it with sugar so when it bakes it comes out all twinkly we are be reminded of Christ's birth.

It's these little stories and reminders of where I come from and who I am that are cheering me not buying gifts. (can you tell i'm not a shopper?)

In remembering my family, I also look forward to Chanukah and lighting the candles on my menorah for 8 night. The rest of the year, the reminder of my ancestral birth sits on the shelf in my family room.

It's a complex blend of family traditions that makes up my December month and I had forgotten that in the pressures of unemployment and health issues.

So guess what I'm making for my kids this year? They almost always get some sort of homemade blanket or pjs or something. This year, I'm making up a traditions cookbook with recipes handed down from my family to them. I will also add some from their father's side. On each page, I'm adding photos of family members long since passed that they never knew and a story about them in addition to a family recipe.

I was feeling kind of down and disconnected but this has made me feel a whole lot better. I'm looking forward to my early morning writing now as it's going to be spent in writing a small poem or story to reflect the people in the photos I miss and my children would have loved to have known.

Are you feeling down? Pressured? I think for me, the holidays have lost a bit of their wonder because my children are grown and so caught up in other things. (maybe this is why people love grandkids so much).

What traditions do you have that you have let slip by the way side? Come share them with us.

Let's make this a time for family and reconnecting and ignore all the commercialism.

Seams
12-06-2009, 01:29 AM
:) Merry Christmas to you and your family and all others gathered round

I normally paint the windows with scenes, the kids help, probably do better than I, but its fun.

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 02:15 AM
:) Merry Christmas to you and your family and all others gathered round

I normally paint the windows with scenes, the kids help, probably do better than I, but its fun.Really, that is so cool. Do you ever take pictures of them?

If you do, would you share with us? I love that idea.

Seams
12-06-2009, 02:26 AM
lol nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo :P

its with water paint so sometimes reindeer turn into raindeer with dew, and roads run into puddles. but its fun with a mug of eggnog (my daughter loves it, but my son thinks it tastes weird..one less gift for him for trashing the nog) :)

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 02:34 AM
lol nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo :P

its with water paint so sometimes reindeer turn into raindeer with dew, and roads run into puddles. but its fun with a mug of eggnog (my daughter loves it, but my son thinks it tastes weird..one less gift for him for trashing the nog) :)Aww...

My kids LOVE eggnog...it makes my tummy cramp but it's wonderful if you use it to make milkshakes with. :)

S.J.
12-06-2009, 02:53 AM
Merry Christmas!!!

I love Christmas. There were carol singers at the station last night and it got me feeling all... christmassy. Christmas is good for mulled wine and family get-togethers etc - although it has lost some of its magic now my brother and sister and I have grown out of that 'childhood' stage. Christmas is kind of nicer when there's a child in the house to go, "Father Christmas has been!!!!" in the morning. Haha.

Also, I decorate my windows too! Some places sell this fake snow spray that sticks to windows. You can just spray it on or use stencils, and voila! :)

Seams
12-06-2009, 02:57 AM
yup i use that snow too, moved from an apartment once as as I looked back i could still see the snowed 'snowflake' in one of the kids windows. how i missed it was beyond me. sometimes I spray my tree with it too

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 03:02 AM
Merry Christmas!!!

I love Christmas. There were carol singers at the station last night and it got me feeling all... christmassy. Christmas is good for mulled wine and family get-togethers etc - although it has lost some of its magic now my brother and sister and I have grown out of that 'childhood' stage. Christmas is kind of nicer when there's a child in the house to go, "Father Christmas has been!!!!" in the morning. Haha.

Also, I decorate my windows too! Some places sell this fake snow spray that sticks to windows. You can just spray it on or use stencils, and voila! :)
YES, I love carolers.

My mom always used that flocking snow spray stuff on our windows. We used to cut out snowflakes from paper and she'd tape it up and use them for the stencil.

Seams
12-06-2009, 03:16 AM
lol @ carolers, reminds me of when i was in newfoundland, you have to watch out there for carolers, they could be 'mummers' instead(who come in and drink all your booze before moving on to the next house...normally you join in, until its a big crowd and then the party begins.

fun times

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 03:27 AM
oh wow, no we never got carolers that actually came in unless we knew them. :) And we only serve hot apple cider, (not the alcoholic kind).

rhymegirl
12-06-2009, 03:31 AM
Are you feeling down? Pressured? I think for me, the holidays have lost a bit of their wonder because my children are grown and so caught up in other things. (maybe this is why people love grandkids so much).

What traditions do you have that you have let slip by the way side? Come share them with us.

Let's make this a time for family and reconnecting and ignore all the commercialism.

Cassi, this thread is interesting to me because I was having some of the same feelings. One, my kids are older now, too. I remember how much fun it was to buy them toys. I haven't bought toys in years.

But my nephew and his wife have a one-year-old, so this year I got to go shop in the toy department! That was fun.

Also sad is the fact that I no longer have my parents. So, on Thanksgiving this year, I put a photo of my mom and dad right near our table as we were having our meal. It was as if they were right there with us. I think I will do something like that for Christmas, too.

This evening as I was driving around it really made me smile to see the Christmas lights all around the neighborhood. The thought that went through my mind was "I want to really appreciate this feeling right now." In a way, it's the days leading up to Christmas I enjoy the most. I don't mean the hustle and bustle shopping frenzy, but the MOOD, I guess. That special feeling in the air.

I've always decorated my tree with my kids. We usually play Christmas music and everybody hangs up their favorite ornaments.

We don't string lights on the front of our house anymore. It became a big hassle and source of friction, with me nagging my husband to do it. He would do it grudgingly and I came to feel it just wasn't worth it. Now I just put a little tree in my front window with some lights around the window.

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 03:55 AM
Cassi, this thread is interesting to me because I was having some of the same feelings. One, my kids are older now, too. I remember how much fun it was to buy them toys. I haven't bought toys in years.

But my nephew and his wife have a one-year-old, so this year I got to go shop in the toy department! That was fun.

Also sad is the fact that I no longer have my parents. So, on Thanksgiving this year, I put a photo of my mom and dad right near our table as we were having our meal. It was as if they were right there with us. I think I will do something like that for Christmas, too.

This evening as I was driving around it really made me smile to see the Christmas lights all around the neighborhood. The thought that went through my mind was "I want to really appreciate this feeling right now." In a way, it's the days leading up to Christmas I enjoy the most. I don't mean the hustle and bustle shopping frenzy, but the MOOD, I guess. That special feeling in the air.

I've always decorated my tree with my kids. We usually play Christmas music and everybody hangs up their favorite ornaments.

We don't string lights on the front of our house anymore. It became a big hassle and source of friction, with me nagging my husband to do it. He would do it grudgingly and I came to feel it just wasn't worth it. Now I just put a little tree in my front window with some lights around the window.I am so glad to see I'm not the only person who feels this way. Like you, both my parents have passed. Life changes. My kids aren't married, and don't have that same feeling anymore when they were little about Christmas so I guess I have to wait till one of them makes me a grandparent.

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 05:19 AM
Seriously, I hope you all will participate. There are those who in their shyness are hesitant to share their struggles with the season.

It's is one of the hardest for many of us to face so let's be the family we are and make so much noise and spaz out that we can't help but laugh. :D

NeuroFizz
12-06-2009, 05:21 AM
This one will be a tough one for me, but I did have the kids today and we went out and bought a tree and decorations. We got it partially trimmed, and we will finish tomorrow afternoon. But the little things that come as surprises give the full-minded impact. Yesterday I was coming home late and I decided to just go through the Taco Bell drive-through. I got up to the pay window with my $4.27 exact change and the guy said the woman in the car in front paid for me. Someone had done it for her recently and she wanted to pay it back. I'll do the same, either at a food place, or maybe the grocery store. It caught me off guard and let me know that there are more people in this world besides me and my family, and even in tough times strangers can give a well-needed boost. When I pay back the kindness, though, I want to make sure the kids are with me. They need a dose of proper spirit in these days that tend to be so me, me, me for children of their ages.

backslashbaby
12-06-2009, 05:30 AM
The pressure in my family is to complain about every possible aspect of Christmas. I'm so glad to hear that some folks do enjoy old traditions and food, or just the pretty lights :) It used to be such a magical time in my childhood, and I still love the winter air and the hot drinks warming up my hands...

I'll come out of the Christmas Closet here. I still love it and everything shiny :D Can I make y'all some gingerbread :D?

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 05:32 AM
This one will be a tough one for me, but I did have the kids today and we went out and bought a tree and decorations. We got it partially trimmed, and we will finish tomorrow afternoon. But the little things that come as surprises give the full-minded impact. Yesterday I was coming home late and I decided to just go through the Taco Bell drive-through. I got up to the pay window with my $4.27 exact change and the guy said the woman in the car in front paid for me. Someone had done it for her recently and she wanted to pay it back. I'll do the same, either at a food place, or maybe the grocery store. It caught me off guard and let me know that there are more people in this world besides me and my family, and even in tough times strangers can give a well-needed boost. When I pay back the kindness, though, I want to make sure the kids are with me. They need a dose of proper spirit in these days that tend to be so me, me, me for children of their ages.YES! I love it when people do this. It happened to me at Starbucks last summer. I cried all the way home. I even posted about it. They call it pay it forward friday.

You've been on my mind today, Fizzy. I'm glad you are here. When I went through this time of my life that you are facing, I had a pretty hard time that first Christmas. And even though my kids' dad lives only three miles away (if that) I had a hard time when they weren't with me. I learned through the years to look at the moment. To stay in that moment and not worry about what will come next.

I guess I started this thread, because believe it or not...this Christmas is rather lonely for me. I'm single...by choice (so I'm not whining about it) and my kids are all grown and even though they will be here on Christmas morning to get up with me...the days between now and then seem more empty than years before.

My friends tell me, I'm reinventing myself. They have no idea how hard it is not to throw things at them when they say stuff like that. For they have spouses and family all around. And can't begin to know how much that annoys me when they say it but I love them just the same.

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 05:34 AM
The pressure in my family is to complain about every possible aspect of Christmas. I'm so glad to hear that some folks do enjoy old traditions and food, or just the pretty lights :) It used to be such a magical time in my childhood, and I still love the winter air and the hot drinks warming up my hands...

I'll come out of the Christmas Closet here. I still love it and everything shiny :D Can I make y'all some gingerbread :D?OH HECK YEAH. I'd love some gingerbread.

:D

Did you guys know, if you take off your glasses...or if you don't need them and look at your tree lights with unfocused eyes, faeries flit from light to light making them dance?

NeuroFizz
12-06-2009, 05:45 AM
Been in the nogg, Cass?

[Thanks for the kind words.]

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 05:51 AM
Been in the nogg, Cass?

[Thanks for the kind words.]hehe...No, I don't drink alceeehol!

It's true you know. They are Christmas Faeries.

backslashbaby
12-06-2009, 07:45 AM
:D I believe you!

I used to try to see the fairies in the flowers as a little girl :)

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 08:29 AM
SEE! It's true. :)

Cassiopeia
12-06-2009, 11:30 PM
So I have a question.

Can or do people really successfully string popcorn for the tree? And if so...HOW?