Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Christmas cheer spread thin

Today I woke exhausted, even though I'm perfectly healthy. Down to the last diaper, down to the last slice of bread, down to the last of my energy with someone cutting homemade Pokemon cards all over the floor and someone else refusing to nap altogether.

I slumped on the couch for my daily "Chat With An Old Lady." What? Gina is telling us to lighten up about Christmas?!?

Suddenly, I felt a whole lot less burdened. How would my family enjoy Christmas if I let myself experience more and analyze less?

So I set to work in the living room, Crystal's Make-Your-Home-A-Haven challenge of the day.

  • I scooped up the paper scraps while Andrew hung the stockings, even though the mismatched hangers make me crazy and I just want to use thumb tacks but that requires another trip to the store with gas money I don't have.
  • I moved the fern out the fireplace and didn't nag even once about my perfect Yule logs which became a pretend campfire in the neighbor's yard before being hauled away by the brush chipper truck.
  • I packed up the last Christmas gift cluttering the corner even though it didn't include the two holiday photos of the kids I had hoped to get developed in time.

And you know what? I am better. Much better.

Thank you to all my Titus 2 women, bloggers and readers alike, who must surely shake their heads when I start unrolling my crazy schemes. Thank you for your gentle reminders--and please, keep them coming!


Anonymous said...

I love your mismatched hangers! Then again, my own are mismatched so maybe I'm not the best to give my opinion on the subject. Ours are all brass tones - one's a star, one a tree, one a snowman and one an angel. Tied together with some greenery, red ribbons and cream candles they look deliberately mismatched (not unlike my china and my dining room chairs and...) and not random acquisitions.

And, yes, giving yourself a little breathing space and a break from the tyranny of the pursuit of perfection is a wonderful gift to yourself!

Jeana said...

I have to say that I really like the mismatched stocking hangers. I've always loved the eclectic.

Meredith said...

I don't mind the mismatched so much as I hate that two are identical snowman in silver plate and two are contemporary santas in a weird silver paint and then there's one candy cane that doesn't fit anywhere! They just sort of arrived here via other people and have never been edited out.

If they weren't so heavy, I'd give them away here : )

Shannon said...

I gotta tell you, it made my day to hear about Andrew's pokemon cards. I try so hard to keep Levi out of the trendy, worldly stuff...but somehow every child on earth knows about pokemon. Levi will be glad to know he isn't the only one who has to make his own cards:)

Anonymous said...

I am glad to hear you are better. Sometime we need a push. I woke up today feeling tired and run down. I also slept well and am healthy as far as I know. I just didn't want to do anything. But I just Thanked God that I had something to do and tried to da a little and I just started feeling better. But that doesn't always works but I try it.

Mrs. Taft said...

I enjoyed this!

Christian - Modobject@Home said...

I set out this December to try to at least one special thing a day with my boys to prepare for Christmas. Here it is the 5th day, only the the FIFTH day, and I've already realized that that was too ambitious. With school, chores, errands, speech therapy, a holiday party -- you know life! Some days it's just enough to open the advent calendar, enjoy the Christmas cards that come in the mail, turn on some carols and gaze at the tree.

Cyndi Lewis said...

I am so glad to know my children aren't the only ones that make pokemon cards. I had been working on getting my kids away from pokemon and they discovered that they could sell their cards to the neighborhood kids. They sold every last one. Now I find homemade ones all over. Well, it's free and creative and they don't trade so I can tolorate it. I'm quite sure my kids are tired of me reminding them that things don't "evolve" in real life.

Anonymous said...

Leave the car keys on the hook and dig out the cloth diapers and make a quick bread for dinner. However much you buy there is always and ingredient you havent got and a full cupboard can be just as useless and an empty one. Deep breath and do you really buy for your first cousins - maybe an email card telling them something nice about them.

Anonymous said...

At least your gifts are wrapped and gone! : ) Thanks, Meredith, I needed the reminder, too.

You don't state the reasons for homemade Pokemon. My son also resorted to creating his own cards when I wouldn't buy Pokemon because of the underlying worldview (BTW, other moms told me to lighten up many times ... maybe I have over time, but you know how it is with your first). So he resorted to homemade cards, called them Meyersman (not 'mon')and they actually became desirable trades among his chums! Today, at 14, he wants to become a graphic designer.

your fireplace is pretty, too, don't remember seeing the mantel installed since you last wrote about it.

deb meyers

Patty said...

Sometimes we just try too hard to be perfect, to do things all in the right way, when in reality, it is in those silly unplanned, messy moments that many of lifes greatest memories are made.

Jenny's Vegcafe said...

I'm glad to know that you have your down days too because I was starting to wonder if it was just me. I'm starting to think that the more I expect of myself to produce a great Christmas the less I feel like doing it. So, I've set a limit on the amount of decoration I'll get out and the amount of baking I'm going to do.
I'd rather spend the time doing fun things like looking at Christmas lights, watching holiday movies with the kids, and reading about the birth of Jesus to my children.

Of course the whole time I'm reading your blog I'm worrying about poor Elise running out of diapers. Have you tried Nanny's brand from Aldi's?

Unknown said...

Hi! Thank you for linking to my blog in your post. I have had an amazing amount of visitors today, all coming from your blog!
Praise God!!

How did you find me?
It's so nice to meet you, Meredith!

Anonymous said...

Personally, I like mismatched stocking hangers. It gives the mantel character and keeps it from looking like a department store-contrived window display. :)

TJ said...

Meredith good job! It's hard to let go sometimes. I saw Mo's dwindling stash of disposables, and quickly found his g diaper cover and insert. Thank God I found those on clearance.

I need the reminder also, as I realize in 19 days I'll have 17+ people in my home. The kids are constantly pulling all of the ornaments off the tree, jumping into the boxes for recycling and shredding anything and everything onto the floor. I just have to take a deep breath and realize it will be clean enough when the time comes.

pomo housewife said...

I'm hearin' ya! It's actually comforting to know that someone with such a natural sense of style still ends up with mismatches. I'd hoped to have a vaguely colour-coordinated tree this year, but having spent my decoration allowance, it still looks like a dog's dinner. We have such a bizarre collection!

Still, I'm taking on board that the decorations are about making the home festive for the kids, and they have the 'more is more' view - they don't care a fig for some homey Victorian vision that I might have had. More colour! More sparkle! More kitsch!

Wishing you peace.

Lylah Ledner said...

love your blog....blessings on you! lylah

Anonymous said...

Hey Meredith,

Who's is the fifth sock for? Aren't there four of you?

I LOVE your blog photos. They are what make this the most readable blog around. Keep up the beautiful work and Merry Christmas!!!

BlondeMomBlog (Jamie) said...

Hang in there...the month is young and there are so many things that can seem to be a priority that aren't!

We all have bad days.

You have a joyful spirit and it rubs off in your blog. :)