The holiday cheer is in the air. I love this time of year, right before Christmas. It is magical, that is magical if you have all your shopping done. Today I also got zapped with $40 in overnight shipping fees which was magical in that I watched my checking account dissappear with a click of the button. The best of the season despite the shipping fees was the thought of my family all being in one place.
This photo of Kids Coming Home is courtesy of TripAdvisor
When my kids were little I remember watching the Folger’s commercials where the daughter or son come home from college for Christmas and peek in the door only to be greeted by the aroma of coffee. Then the parents hear them coming and run down to greet them with giant bear hugs. At that time, the kids were little and doing things like spilling their drinks and food all over the house, ripping each others hair out (just kidding) and causing havoc everywhere they went. I would collapse on the couch at night to watch a little (very little) TV and that commercial would come on. I would dream of the days when my duties would be over, a life at last. Then as the kids got older and more interactive and fun, I would watch the same commercial and shudder at the thought of losing them. Next year, my oldest is going to college. She is currently finishing high school in a different state so the separation pain began one year earlier.
Yesterday, I couldn’t contain my excitement when I picked my daughter up at the airport. I was a bit early, so I circled round and round until her luggage came out. As I made my way around, I would slow down at the arrival terminal to see if she would come out. Out of the corner of my eye, I spotted a young girl pulling luggage as she exited the terminal. Thinking it was her, I slowed down only to see a mom throw open her car door oblivious to passing traffic, and scoop her daughter into her arms. The two were crying and jumping up and down with excitement. I remained frozen as the tears came down my face, that is until the whistle guy in the bright yellow jacket began to assault my vehicle.
“KEEP MOVING” he yelled.
I am, I thought. The problem is I am moving much too fast.
Dam that Folgers commercial. Who needs Folger’s in their cup anyways?
Thirteen days until we return home for the holidays and we are all counting down. At first I have to say that I didn’t miss home. I didn’t miss the day in, day out routines, the endless to-do lists, and the chores that seemed to appear faster than I could check them off. I loved the fact that I was in another country and was able to travel to places that I couldn’t even pronounce. I loved the fact that my house was big enough to feed my family and my pub down the street was three times the size. I loved learning how to cook foods I wasn’t familiar with – ha ha ha, fresh foods. There are no Dunkin Donuts here, no fast food, no super sizing of any kind. When a Brit wants a large beverage they will say “give it to me American style…extra large.” I even got used to recycling and putting out one trash bin for a family of six every TWO weeks. [pullquote]Believe it or not, one dented fender and $5,000 bill later, I even got used to driving on the wrong side of the road. [/pullquote]
Now I am ready to go home. I miss my family, my friends, and I miss my dog and cat. I was afraid to open that door in my heart. I didn’t make too many phone calls home to tell people I missed them. I looked forward and never looked back, until now. The last month I have had a dreaded cold, probably pneumonia. In the absence of sunlight our average time we get up on a Saturday is somewhere between 10:30 and 11:30. Am I regressing back to college days?
When the trip is over I am sure I will be refreshed and tired of the phone ringing off the hook. I am sure I will want to get out of the freezing cold. I am sure that I will look forward to the trips into London and the outings with my new girlfriends. For now, I will count the days and open that door to everyone I love so much.
Who are we kidding? We are going to consumer carrot cake and holiday cookies for two weeks straight, drink ourselves into oblivion, and then at the magical stroke of midnight turn into Richard Simmons?
It is no wonder we end up disappointed with ourselves when we can’t follow through. New Years resolutions are all about structure, but must it be so militant? We hate it, but yet survive on it, right down to the way we shower. Shampoo first, then creme rinse, then soap, shave, rinse, done. There isn’t anything better than my routine. With all that in mind here are my 2011 resolutions:
- I resolve to writing my book despite the number of times I mentally check out to order a new this or that online.
- I resolve to keeping my boundaries, doing what feels right for me.
- I resolve to buy less and spend more time with those I love and myself.
- YES, I RESOLVE TO BE ON TIME!
What are your resolutions? How long can you stick to them? I would love to hear from you. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s article from Kristen Mastromarino from theorganizedlifestylestore.com who will share some of her tips for staying on track with your resolutions.
Monday is my new series The Imperfect Perfectionist found on Life With Wendy where I am partnering with Kristin ( (a Professional Organizer and owner of The Organized Lifestyle Store, Theorganizedlfestylestore.com/blog) to find a way to manage time as a mom and feel a sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.
FIVE DAYS LEFT. Not like I am counting. I am counting, because I have a million things to do and five days, count them 1,2,3,4,5, left to do them in.
Here is my naughty and nice list:
”Mom lip gloss is a tradition in my stocking.”
The only thing that saves my daughter is that I still love my lip gloss. Remember these? Dr. Pepper was my favorite and I found them, the big tubes, $3.95 at http://bit.ly/h1mXWD.
#2)Holiday parties and Band Concerts.
#3) Extra Gift Shopping.
- post man
- milk man
- bus driver
- paper boy
- nail salon
- office at school
Ironically enough, the person that I owe the most to is my garbage collectors and I didn’t think about them. Should I attach someone, whoops Fraudian slip, something to the trash can?
#4) Prepare House for Christmas Eve Party which will be a blast, right?!
- Cook Food
- Buy Paper Goods
- Clean House
#5) Bake (hide the scale)
- Peanut butter cookies with chocolate kisses
- Double chocolate cookies with white hugs
- Chocolate chip heath bars
I am putting out this challenge to you Kristin to give me a way to make life simpler (ha ha) and help me so I still can sleep and function enough to enjoy myself because afterall that is what holidays are for!
PS- And don’t tell me to give up baking…I would even give up my martinit before I gave up the cookies.