My big present to the kids this year is that I reclaimed the front room, so we have a place to work on projects, a place for mommy to be when I wake up so I don’t wake THEM up, a place to have playdates that doesn’t require our entire house to be company-clean. It gives us time and space, to breathe, to play, to be together, and to be apart. I didn’t realize what a huge present I was giving *myself* until noticed how much time I’ve been spending in there! It was a hug pile of boxes and old studio supplies, and now it has a sofa, a work table, and I have access to my loom. It went from an eyesore visible from the street to an inviting space that I can’t wait to invite folks to come visit us in! In short, I tried to channel Amy Bradstreet, and like to think I succeeded somewhat. I have learned from her that ‘housekeeping’ and ‘keeping home’ are completely and wonderfully different things. Thank you, Amy. 🙂
We are celebrating Chanukah: we have a paper Chanukiah in the window, which we ‘lit’ with paper flames while skyping with the kids’ courtesy grandmother last night, while she lit her real chanukiah in Montreal. We won’t be here to light the whole thing, but still. We aren’t Jewish, but love the tradition, so we use paper, or markers on the windows directly, so as to observe both the ritual AND the exclusive right of Jews to light the candles themselves. We didn’t get to add latkes and dreidl in this year; the holidays are just too close together this year, and time too short! Chag Sameach to all who celebrate the Festival of Lights!
We are celebrating Solstice: our window has a star in the upper right, which will shine rays down on everything, including the hare I’ll put up tomorrow. We just got back from a small gathering of friends after celebrating the darkest day in the rainy woods. Solstice has always been the holiday I’ve found most personally meaningful; the trust that the light WILL come again has gotten me through some very hard times. Blessed Solstice to all who observe the shortest day!
We are celebrating Christmas: the window has the reindeer decoration you’ve already seen, numerous paper chains and lights adorn the room, and we have the Christmas tree we got the very night I finished the room. We’ve hunkered down on the new sofa with a blanket, hot chocolate or egg nog, and Charlie Brown’s Christmas on Hulu. I’ve watched Hallmark movies while writing out cards to loved ones, and I’ve wrapped and baked and wrapped some more. We’ll celebrate Christmas eve with Church, stories, and baking cookies for Santa. We’ll celebrate on the day itself with my extended family and Daddyman via skype (he has to work that night), and with Daddyman in person when he is able to join us on the 26th. We visited Santa today, and the kids told him that they were on his team, since they donated some of their loveys to Goodwill. Merry Christmas to all who celebrate it, religiously or secularly!
Now for some photos of the kids, since our holiday card included this URL and the promise of cute kid pictures for the relatives. Coughing up $25 for a picture I could neither compose myself, nor have a digital copy to edit was right out, but here’s a cute picture of the kids from right after their visit with Santa’s helper, Mall Santa:
One more picture of an incredibly cute three year old, blundering through the lyrics to Jingle Bells while ‘wrapping’ a package we got in the mail with scraps of my own wrapping endeavors and mile upon mile of scotch tape. He takes his job as gift giver very seriously: he wrapped one of his baby spoons for me, and even wrote out a tag in just the right shade of green. I’ll try to put the video Daddyman got of Buddy wrapping and singing up on YouTube next week, just so I don’t lose it. Trust me – too cute!
Whatever holidays you do or do not celebrate, we hope your days this season are joyous ones, and that 2012 brings hope and understanding the those in the world most desperately in need of them!