“Oh no,” I cried. “Not again!”
Bad enough that summer was nothing but a giant rainstorm … but it’s November and you know what that means! Holidays. I am even more unready for holidays as I am for finding someone to clear the millions of leaves off our property, much less having them mix with tons of snow. Arghh!
My son decided to not do Thanksgiving this year. It’s the first time we’ve ever lived near each other and not “done” Thanksgiving and he was a bit apologetic.
“Not to worry,” I said. He got an invitation to go to the Cape and enjoy someone else’s cooking. I congratulated him. I pointed out he might learn to enjoy not making a giant feast. We’ll do a get-together Christmas Eve and open our mini-gifts, which is what we give.
I have a tabletop fake (but it looks real) tree with decorations already on it. It has lights, too. It lives in the guest room in a big black bag. Every year, I remove the bag, carry the tree to the living room, and plug it in.
I cook something on Christmas Eve for whoever is coming by. No one except Owen bothers to tell me they are coming. I think my granddaughter is hoping for a better offer.
We don’t buy “real” gifts. No big packages greatly reduce Christmas visits. I give better gifts for birthdays. One gift to one person — I can get something they may actually want. Garry and I give each other stuff all the time anyway. As for me, we’ve already got far too much stuff.
Christmas Day, Garry and I watch boring old movies during which they sing “White Christmas” and Garry always points out that it’s racist. Then we eat something, which this year, might be frozen pizza.
When I was a mere lass, the Thanksgiving through Christmas holiday season was a big deal. Mostly that grew out of being raised “atheistically Jewish.” That meant no celebration. No decorations. I always felt left out. When I married “out,” I was delighted to finally get a piece of the holiday.
But then, everyone, including my granddaughter, grew up. I realized we didn’t need a huge tree taking up half the living room nor did I need to go into five years of credit debt to buy stuff no one seemed to care about.
These years, the Holidays are stripped to the minimum. Enough so my little tree looks pretty — and takes less than 10 minutes to set up. Garry and I buy each other something small. This year, I think I’ll get him a Red Sox sweatshirt. He will buy me flowers because he figures if I wanted it, I’ve probably already bought it.
What a relief!