The Party’s Over

So much for Christmas. It’s over for another year.

When did time start to move so quickly? It was only a short time ago when the first snow began to fall, we had people over for my birthday, I was beginning to think about Christmas baking… and suddenly, in a flash or two of the digital camera, it’s done.

It seems that the older we get, the faster it goes. And for us, it’s not even that big of an event to begin with. We drag out a couple of decorations, we buy a couple of presents, we watch a couple of holiday movies. But we never really feel Christmas-y, not really. I am sure that it will all change when we have kids, but the magic isn’t really there for us now that we’re older. Sure, we had a lovely day, and we tried being festive and all that, but aside from the gifts and the food, it could have been any other day.

What IS nice about Christmas, though, is the opportunity to relax. When we’re here for Christmas, we don’t have to worry about visiting or entertaining, so once we get our baking and gift-giving for friends done, we have about a week of time all to ourselves. We clean the house, just so we can enjoy a few days in a nice, clean house. We decorate because we like how pretty it looks. We cook, but there’s no massive meal for umpteen people. And we can both sit and relax and enjoy some time together. I knit, BDH plays his video games. The cats have a special treat of turkey bits and pieces and then they snooze away under the tree or in some quiet corner or other. And we all unwind.

When we go home for Christmas, it’s much more festive. There are kids around so the magic of Santa is still in the air. There are big family meals but everyone pitches in. But even with BDH’s family, everyone appreciates this time of year as a bit of time to unwind and relax and so there’s still not a lot of rushing about and entertaining all and sundry. It’s still a relaxing time, just with more people around to relax with.

Now we’re in the post-Xmas, post-Boxing Day twilight zone. BDH has gone in to work for two short days after 5 days at home. He’ll go into an office that is half-staffed at best, as most people will undoubtedly have taken holidays. Nobody will feel much like working. They’re still mentally on holidays. People will mill about, chatting about their Christmas, eating leftover turkey and sweets from the holiday, and then after two days of work they’ll be back home for a weekend. Then, back in for one day — New Year’s Eve — and then off for one day, then back for 3… And then we are taking proper holidays for two weeks.

But even if BDH had taken holidays over Christmas and New Year’s this year, we’d still be in that post-Christmas stupor. Stuffing ourselves with leftover turkey dinner and plopped on the couch watching videos that Santa brought just two days before. Sleeping late, napping, yawning in front of the television. Sitting at the window with coffee full of cream and a shot of something special and watching the snow fall. It was all we could do to get up and get moving for work today.

I think it’s nice that we’ve abandoned the frazzled high-stress rushing-about holiday time in favour of quiet and relaxing and time off. We certainly feel a lot more peaceful on earth and feel more goodwill to men. But maybe that’s because we’re stuffed so full of turkey.