WELL, AIN'T THAT SOMMAT: It's almost Christmas

Life has a habit of slipping by more quickly than anticipated. I found my eyes widening as one of my annual customs cropped up in my reminder queue: Queen Elizabeth II wishing her kingdom a very merry Christmas. It won't air until the 25th; have a link to People.

Christmas is Almost Now. We haven't put up the tree nor decorated. We've been too busy dealing with life, with Mum's surgery and recovery, and with other things.

If necessary, I suppose I could slap a tree up tomorrow. I have one ready to go: thin pre-lit tree, lots of cheap plastic ornaments. It's tacky as fuck and in no way does it really jive with our standard stuff. I bought it last month when we realized the downstairs couldn't support the size of our customary junk.  Dad's hospital bed and equipment, and his mobility, take priority.

I had already come to the conclusion that we wouldn't have more than a simple dinner on the 25th. Look at it in a practical sense, I could write a book on not giving a fuck about holiday decorations this year.

Though I see someone beat me to the overall picture. Good on you, Sarah Knight.  

Now on Amazon. Woo.

Entirely too much emphasis is put on looking like Christmas rather than embracing it.  The neighbors try their best to outdo each other. I get it. The world is a dreary place right now. However, as Roy L Smith once wrote, he who has no Christmas in his heart will never find it under a tree.  Add a bit of sage advice from QEII:

"Through the many changes I have seen over the years, faith, family and friendship have been not only a constant for me but a source of personal comfort and reassurance."

When I think back to all our Christmases together, I realize that half the fun for Better Half and I was the preparations leading up to the day. Glittering and twinkling decorations were always a part of it. We made an annual pilgrimage to Hozak Farms to get our wreath. A homemade meal prepared by my Aunt - or a meal prepared and shared by us after she passed on - offered opportunities to rekindle bonds on Christmas Day. When the parents moved here, we started celebrating together as a family, just as we had in Colorado.

However, the day itself is just a day.  You don't need the bling to make it special. You're doing it wrong if you only have the joy one day each year.

We'll visit Mum tomorrow, and again on Christmas Day. I doubt Dad will have the energy to attend Christmas mass on top of it. We'll see.

Meanwhile, I have the duck thawing, the beans crisping, and the potatoes awaiting Better Half's blade. It's a simple meal made from the heart, a throwback to so many quiet Christmas dinners shared just between the two of us.  We'll have just three at home this year. And with Mum enjoying her own plate once we arrive, we'll be complete regardless of the location or decoration.

I might just put that tacky tree up, though.  It'll bring a smile to Dad's face.