Doesn’t it seem like we just put those Christmas decorations away? Some of us (who may or may not have put them away in September) surely do feel that that Christmas stuff just got all dragged up to the attic, and now its time to drag it down again. This feeling of deja vu becomes more and more pronounced as we get older, and this year, I swear I’m just going to leave all that stuff up instead of packing it up and getting it down a few days later.
Oh, the joys of Christmas. The attic contains spiders, and dust, and a few mice. There are regiments of sealed boxes of Christmas decorations, each labelled, or red and green in color, or both, to help us decide which piles of crap to carry downstairs. We are winded, carrying some boxes down one flight of stairs, and some boxes down two. Kevin insists that we wipe the top of each box with a wet rag to keep the dust down. The Christmas trees are in pieces in the garage. We struck a Faustian deal, Kevin and I. I insisted that real trees were the only way to go. He insisted that fake trees are the only way to go. I wanted two trees, one for the front sitting room and one for the upstairs sitting room (now taken over by Amanda’s millions of fake plastic toys). We made an agreement: I could have two trees if we got fake ones. So I agreed to the fakes, and he agreed to two trees, and now, by God, every year we have two trees to put up.
Amanda loves the idea of decorating. Most years, she putzes around, puts a couple ornaments on the tree, drops a couple of glass things, throws some icicles on the floor, and calls it a day. She was a little more helpful this year although she had some weird requests. She wanted to keep a single bird ornament away from the others and off the tree and name it “Red Ball”. I don’t know. She decided my Anne Geddes Santa baby had morphed into her Elf on a Shelf, and I think her dad is egging her on, because damn if the thing didn’t move from the bottom of her bed to her pillow. She was amazed. She had just run off in a huff because I told her that all the icicles on the bottom of the tree was NOT a good look and we were going to have to do something about it. She came running back down, in a fantastic mood, because the “elf” (read Anne Geddes Santa baby) had moved across her room. Well, at least I didn’t have to suck up to her about hurting her feelings. I really didn’t mean to. I just thought having all the icicles on the bottom of the tree was a really bad idea, and I was put out with her for pulling them all off the top.
The rest of the house has to be decorated as well. We have a sleigh with reindeer and a sleigh fairy for the dining room table, which first had to be divested of all the crap that resides on that table: Amanda’s homework and art projects and my art projects and spare paper and pens and Sharpies. There is very little room for food. We got the sleighs up, though, and the heavy apple and pinecone garlands put up above the fireplace mantels. Then it was time to weave the fir garland around and around and around the stair rails up two flights of stairs. When we get some Christmas cards to put up, we will stick them with poster stickum on the part of the curving stairwell that we can reach.
Daddy’s job is to assemble the trees and put up the outside lights. Other than that, he is not very festive, plugging away on his computer while Amanda and I decorate. He did play us some Christmas music while we worked today. He has not put up the outside lights yet, and I will have to
nag ask him later to bring the ladder outside and put them up. That is not the fun part.
We have festive holiday towels in the kitchen, and pot holders, and candles, and little ringy things for the doors, and bells, and tons of hideous Christmas ornaments that Amanda has made over the years. She has her own small Christmas tree in her room; this year I decked it out with fifty lights and she hung her ornaments on it. I do miss having the dogs around at Christmas, as one was killed by a coyote in our yard and the other had to be sent away with doggie PTSD. Before we had a child, I had Santa outfits for the dogs (sickening, yes, I know) and enjoyed them sniffing around the tree and gifts.
So the joy of the Christmas season is upon us, and we are beset with ornaments and decorations and trees from the years of yore. We got most everything up over the weekend, and it will stay there until New Year’s. I was just kidding about the September part. It just feels that way.