Usually the holiday season is an endless list of tasks and errands. Christmas Eve is usually at our house and then Christmas Day many times too. The last several years though since we moved east, the holiday season has been quiet, many times too quiet. This year in particular was way too quiet and lonely.
Personally, I love the hustle and bustle of the holidays. I'm a list writer and as a Virgo usually have my presents bought early and the Christmas cards ready to mail by Thanksgiving, many times they are even hand made. Having all this done and ready made it possible for me to go to the malls, get a nice cup of coffee and just watch other people hustle and bustle. Then I would go home and cook and bake and then bake some more! I MISS that here!
I learned much of this from my folks. My folks would have the majority of their shopping done before Thanksgiving and then because of their hectic schedules dad would sit me down with all the gifts, a card table, wrapping paper, tape, bows and tags on the day after Thanksgiving and that was where I would spend the Thanksgiving weekend watching Christmas movies, eating leftover turkey sandwhiches and wrapping gifts. When the gifts were done, I would start on the Christmas cards. Now this wasn't an abuse of child labor laws, it was how I earned a chunk of money for my own Christmas shopping. And dad was a generous employer.
Christmas Eve was spent at our house with the immediate extended family (grams and gramps, aunts, uncles and cousins and many times neighbors too). We would do a big buffet and then open all our gifts to each other and have a party. We'd go to sleep happy and sated while waiting for Santa and then start Christmas day with stockings and brunch. By afternoon the turkey and ham were smelling great and we were ready to start all over. Oh it was the same bunch of people, but we would add a great aunt and uncle. Looney Louise, (okay we didn't call her looney to her face, but it is what made her such fun) made us cornflake wreaths with red hots and fudge! All us cousins would sit on the front porch waiting for them and for our wreaths! It wouldn't have been Christmas without them!
As always I'm looking forward to the next holiday season just after this one ends, but knowing that the next one will be spent around family makes it already more special.