There is just no getting around it, try as I might; Christmas is in three weeks and I haven't done doodly-squat to get ready for it. I'm just not feeling the love for baking a dozen different kinds of cookies, festooning my house with stuff that the cats can, rip down, play with, eat and take a trip to the vets for, and horrors of all horrors...shopping.
What's up with that, you might ask?
Ambivilence thou art the Tapdancer!
It could be that it is a colossal, all-weekend job to get all of us to put our crap away, so there's room to put up the holiday schmaltz, and I hate cleaning house anyway (is there really some woman out there who just lives to tidy up after the hordes? If yes, honey, we need to talk!)
It could be that having bought a new heating/cooling system, Christmas is going to be kind of tight - how do you explain that to kids who still believe in Santa? Its not that I think they need a boatload of plastic shit to break/lose/leave around on the floor for me to find and scream about, but yeah, I do love the look on their faces when they see the tree on Christmas morning. I've worked very hard to keep the magic alive, but its harder on a tight budget.
It could be that the idea of baking all those cookies, while I'm trying to not gain weight (pshhhh! because to try to diet during December is Few-Tile chile!) is also daunting enough to put it off, though in all fairness, I can't begin baking until this weekend, or stuff just isn't fresh enough to cut it for the holidays (I really hate stale cookies - they're right up there with ...ulp...fruitcake...mmulp...I think I just puked in my mouth thinking of fruit-...IT).
I also sent out notice that we would be having our Solstice Party this year, so tack that on as extra work in all the departments - cooking, cleaning, decorating, shopping. I do want to have the party - it was so un-festive last year, when my younger brother hosted it - it seemed more like a Superbowl party, which is fine, but it isn't what we dream of nostalgically when we look back through the mist of years and remember what made Christmas special. THAT is my personal mantra, when it comes to the holidays - how are my kids going to remember this?
We have also been pinned down for the visit to the inlaws during the Christmas week already, which always depresses me. I love my husband, but over the 20 years we have been together, my tolerance for his Fundie parents has gone clean away. I think the breaking point for me was when my mother-in-law told my oldest child that he was going to grow up and become a terrorist, and that his parents (us) were unfit to parent. Nice, huh? All because they lost control of a situation with the kids and my oldest son wrote a letter to an imaginary person to vent his rage, calling his grandparents (in the letter only, not to their faces) "Butt-kiss God Lovers", which of course they found and freaked out over. We were not there, being in Wales at the time, so our welcome home gift was this story, told from my mother-in-law's favorite place - atop her soapbox.
I know, how can I be so unfair to them? Personally, I love the term "Butt-kiss God Lovers" - I think it sums it all up quite succinctly.
But it does make visiting them quite stressful, to say the least. It didn't help that the hubby really didn't confront them in a timely or decided manner - he kind of let it slide, while just not talking to them at all (are all men this good at communication? Oy! I shudder to think...). I see them once a year, at Christmas; I think I'm going to need sedatives or maybe a straight jacket, to keep myself contained, but in the meantime, here I am, ambivilent and procrastinating.
After that pile of fecal matter, my family's Christmas looks tame. There is always the question of who my mother will choose from among her children to be The Reviled One, as we like to term it. We're not sure why she feels compelled to do this; maybe its how she deals with her stress, but every year she picks one of us (well, one of us that isn't my younger brother - he is exempt - don'tcha love favoritism?) and makes our life hell. One year she told me, two days before Christmas, that she didn't get me anything, it was just too much of a hassle - I know - WTF? I think it was last year that my sister was the RO - her special diet needs were too much to accomodate, and nothing she could do was good enough. I think there was also an altercation on the actual Christmas Day (we get together at the end of the week after), at my sister's house, involving my mother and the other guests. My older brother too, has been the not-so-lucky recipient, with endless drunk phone calls and criticisms of his cooking, his kids (who are great, btw!), his life, etc... And OMG, the drunk dialing...sometimes when she gets on a roll, we call each other and send out the warning: don't answer your phone - Mom's on the loose! But let's not lose sight of the other parent...my father and the deep dark abyss he falls into at Christmas (that no one can talk to him about - sigh )- he morphs in frickin Eeyore this time of year, sighing and moping; bah-humbugging at every occasion - if ever there was a good excuse to get someone drunk, he is that excuse - he is nothing, if not a merry drunk, which is far preferable to my mother's version of tipping it back - it might have been a story she was telling you, but its been 15 minutes and the point is nowhere in sight. You try to go to the bathroom, and she follows you in, still talking...!!!!
But see? That is so much tamer then the potential crisis of Faith we will have to endure with the in-laws. It almost puts me in the mood for the holidays,...almost.