Always Real

It Is Finished

How are ya internets? Are your tidings glad? Are your gentlemen merry and rested? I hope so. At the very least, I hope your sinuses are clear.

So then, this Christmas season, it is finished and all that remains is the lingering and warm glow of memory and little dusty sparkly bits everywhere. I must report that no Christmas has ever been more merry than this one I just spent with a four-year-old. Oh y’all, the glee!  The sqealing with delight! The unfiltered, unabashed joy! It is good for any soul that is tired or ailing.

So today then, we dismantle Christmas, sweep up the glitter, box up the trinkets and stash it all away for another year which will surely come and go all too quickly. Ah, but the sweetness and joy, may it live on throughout the year. May I reflect thoughtfully upon it in July when it is 840 degrees outside and I’ve been trapped in my house with a 4-year-old for 33 straight days.

I will be back when my housekeeping chores are done. In the meantime, here’s a post from January 2006.

Christmas Dimentia

January 6th, is the Feast of the Epiphany. For Catholics, and perhaps other denominations as well, that is the official day to take down the tree. The link suggests that as a family, we take a leisurely day and take down the decorations and then sit around a lovely meal I prepared (What? When I wasn’t undecorating?) and talk about what we enjoyed most about the Christmas season. Yes, I will do that – just as soon as I get back to the Marthaship.

Anyway, yesterday I finished the 2-day long task of taking down my tree and decorations. By two days, I mean two toddler-days. You can arrive at this number by taking 16 waking hours and subtracting the amount of time you do not have a toddler attached to your mid-thigh which is roughly equivalent to 3 hours and 15 seconds – if you include naptime and the time he locked himself in the closet and I left him there played hide-and-seek with him.

Here are just some of this years holiday decorating stats:

Number of boxes hauled out of the attic:  37 and counting
Number of trips made up and down the stairs:  57
Number of times I said I will buy no more ornaments:  7
Number of new ornaments purchased:  9
Number of ornaments broken:  2
Number of decorations that escaped packing:  1 – so far.
Number hours spent decorating and un-decorating:   Embarrassed to admit
Number of times I vowed to have a simple Christmas next year:  1.5xday/30 days = 45

In spite of these startling statistics, around mid-November, Christmas Dementia will set in again. I forget how much work it was to haul and install all the Christmas glory.

Like an old boyfriend, I only remember the good times. I look forward to unwrapping each ornament and reminiscing about when we first met. The second hour of unwrapping and reminiscing, love turns to like. The third hour like turns to tolerate. Four hours and 15 trips up the stairs into the attic, I’m throwing ornaments on the tree from across the room, hoping that at least one will stick or better, meet it’s death.

But as I stated in a previous post, all the holiday glitter and glam delights the little boy and makes it worth it the effort. For approximately 30 days. Then, somewhere around December 26th, I have my own epiphany.

The Christmas-induced dementia disolves leaving me with a sparkly hangover. My 37 boxes of old friends suddenly seem too high-maintenance. I decide I need to set some boundaries with them. And their boundaries are in the attic. And this is when I firmly state, for the 46th time, that next year we will have a simple Christmas with only a few decorations.

Here’s one last statistic.

Number of days before Chrismas Dementia sets in: 313

Photo temporarily unavailable.

18 thoughts on “It Is Finished

  1. I see you already noticed that I mentioned you before I could even give you a heads up. Love your blog — visit mine any time you like. Happy New Year.

  2. What an accurate post… some years I look at the garland that I lovingly picked out to decorate my loft and stair railings with when we bought this house, make an unattractive sound, and shove the stuff back in the attic. As for the items that escaped undecorating, there is a fairly large pile of those at the bottom of my staircase right now, just waiting for someone to carry them upstairs and shove them (without love and care) into whatever decoration box is closest to the attic door…

  3. “Number of decorations that escaped packing: 1 – so far.”

    It drives me crazy when I have gotten everything all packed up and then I find it…the one item that didn’t make it to the attic! I usually keep it laying around for another week just to make sure I didn’t miss anything else. I am all about trying to minimize attic visits!

  4. There’s the putting away of the Christmas when you have a toddler “gartered” to your upper thigh…and then there’s the one where you’re still doing ALL of the work, but three teenagers are lying about the house (asleep or not asleep) like lazy Romans after a feast. X-Box is blaring machine gun fire. Two people are texting someone else simultanously. Wilco is broadcasting from someone’s laptop. It is noon and one person is dressed only in boxers (It’s 34 degrees!!) while the other two stagger about it flannel lounge pants (depicting the Pillsbury Doughboy and Stewie from Family Guy) and wrapped in afghans. They announce they haven’t had breakfast yet. And I’m to blame. Pray for me.

  5. I’m guilty of ornament excess. Yet I love the buying of new ones and the ritual of remembering each as they go on and off the tree. We wait until Epiphany to take down our decorations, as well.

    I must add that is an adorable photo!

  6. Peace on earth goodwill to men! The attic is what is getting me. This is the first year I didn’t haul every last box down myself, and didn’t even make my husband get down 2 of the boxes. I’m dreaming of my children leaving home and having a Christmas storage- room, or buying one of those faux-barn-looking storage sheds.

    We’re not quite to AB’s stage of lethargy and undress, but there has been a rubber ball bouncing non-stop for the last 36 hours.

  7. Heh. We actually do celebrate the Ephiphany around here – but you take your tree down around the 5th and then have your party the next day. It’s quite restful. My tree has next to no needles on it right now, which is pretty festive.

  8. Sadly, the sinuses are not clear here, nor is my tree taken down and stored away.

    I love the fireplace picture, though. 🙂 Happy New Year!

  9. I did not know there was a medical name for it… Christmas dementia. Does the support group meet at your house? Wednesday mornings? Great.

  10. My procratiNation membership has caused me to walk by the tree 20 times today and come up with a different excuse everytime to not take it down. Here are a few: It’s too pretty, I don’t have any help, Lucy is sick, the ladder is behind the car, maybe I can throw a sheet over it for a year.

  11. “Like an old boyfriend, I only remember the good times”. I would add like the birth of your second and subsequent children. You know, when you’ve completely forgotten the pain until you get that first contraction, and you say “Oh, dear God….!”

  12. I waited until the last minute to do my shopping, vowing the whole time to keep it simple this year. Then, three days before Christmas, my resolve broke down in the middle of Toys R Us. It wasn’t pretty.

  13. Be thou glad that thou dost not live in a Spanish-speaking country. January 6th is when they get all their presents! (in honor of the Three Kings, of course).

    I wouldn’t mind all of the decoration fuss so much if I didn’t have to look at it from August onwards in the stores…

  14. I’m all for the feast of the Epiphany, but my tree was a fire hazard by December 23rd. It’s outta here, baby. I guess I’m gonna have to start cuttin’ my own.

  15. Call me I nerd or something, but… *sigh!* I loooove packing away my ornaments! Tying the fake tree together and getting it up to the attic is another story, and the only moment of angst is when I wonder WHY the tree has to be so HUGE!

    And? Toys that make loud violent noises? Are going to have an accident this week.

  16. I’m not sure about Epiphany, but one night this week I got really industrious and took all the icicles off the tree and tossed them in the trash.

    Next week I should be able to remove the garlands of beads and put them in the baggie.

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