My Christmas holiday unfolded just as I thought it would. Despite my best efforts and promises to keep it stress free, no such luck. I still had my family over for Christmas Eve, worked the rest of the night as a Christmas elf and then had my kidneys kicked in by the six year old who was too excited to go to bed and slept with me. Christmas morning arrives and I look like something the cat left in the alley. I recharged immediately at the looks of breathless anticipation on my kids' faces (or was it annoyance because I was the last to come downstairs?).
Gift opening was actually fun. The youngest child was excited with everything she opened and the older girls enjoyed the money in their stockings. This was the first year I'd ever asked for an appliance (a stainless steel toaster because I'm changing out the white plastic appliances for nicer ones). For my husband, who has arms like a gorilla, he loved the extra tall clothing I was able to find for him. Then we actually sat down and watched some holiday tv, the parade from Disneyworld, actually. And it was nice.
The holidays usually go by in a blur and we can never remember what happened or if we even enjoyed ourselves. Every year we promise it will be different, but I'm beginning to wonder if it can be when you have large families and limited opportunities to see each other, especially when people live out of town. It's crazy, but on some level we must be enjoying it. Otherwise, why do we continue to do this every year?