Tuesday, December 25, 2012

This Is Christmas

Baby, it's cold outside...

As I write this, it's 0 degrees outside with a windchill of 13 below. Not exactly cozy.

It seems I'm hardwired to get up early on Christmas morning. I was usually the first of us kids out of bed, always at an unseemly hour -- the oldest but still the most eager to go check out stockings. When I was in my teens, it meant I could get breakfast (cinnamon rolls) started. And in college ... well, there wasn't really a reason. I just woke up.

This year, despite the fact that we're not really celebrating today, I'm still up. And I've got those cinnamon rolls rising and the oven preheating. Because even if we're not really celebrating, we need our food.

The last few years, we've adapted to odd Christmases, much as every family with grown children does. For one reason or another, we can't always make it home for the 25th itself -- one lives too far away, one has to work. I'm here, but then I haven't left in two years.

What a thought.

I'll be home for Christmas...

Not that any of this is bad this year. In '09 we all got stuck (literally) in different places. Shorty and I played almost every boardgame in the house because we couldn't get out. Mom and Dad got stuck in a hotel room in Minneapolis. Mia Sorella was in Shanghai with a friend. The next year, we were all just hoping the weather would cooperate enough so that her plane would land Christmas night.

All is calm, all is bright...

This year, the weather, though frigid, is calm. The sky may even be blue when the sun comes up. We've all got a warm place to stay. And here I am with my first cup of coffee of the day, thinking about past years and the years to come.

By this point next year, we'll be slightly more scattered, or maybe we won't. We'll have a harder time traveling, but maybe we won't.

Maybe thinking about Christmas in years to come will get me nowhere.

For now, I'm happy to be home on Christmas day, even if it's not really my Christmas day. I'm happy to take a day off in this utter mayhem that is December and not pack, not worry about next week, not think about logistics and weather.

For now, I'm content, and that's what I really wanted for Christmas.

Merry Christmas, all. Have a great week.

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