Monday, December 29, 2008

A calming Christmas

I have to say that this Christmas holiday has been one of the most enjoyable I have ever experienced. Why? I believe that there are a few reasons.

  • We didn't make a lot of plans. You always know that there will be a school Christmas concert and a Sunday School pageant. So we planned around that. At the beginning of December we cut back on a lot of the extras because we knew that we would be busy already.

  • I started making presents for the teachers a month a head of time. I actually almost ran out of time so I plan to start early next year. But making gifts for the teachers (which totalled 7) made it easier and they all appreciated their gifts.

  • Since I had been out to visit my family in Ontario in the summer we decided not to do a gift exchange this year. Which took a lot of the burden off of me. Since we are now living from one income, cuts have to be made somewhere.

  • Instead of buying a lot of gifts for the girls we took the girls shopping and put together shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child.

  • We traded in some of our air miles and spent two nights at the Temple Gardens Mineral Spa as a family holiday. It was great we were so water logged though. But what a great way to start our holiday. My husband had been working long hours so it was nice to do a lot of nothing but spend time together.

  • On Christmas day we decided to stay home and dedicate the day to our family. What a great day. Our girls actually slept in and we leisurely opened presents and eat some breakfast. Watched a movie and then went snowmobiling. While we were out we came across 6 deer grazing. It was beautiful.

  • On a sad note, my neighbour lost his wife of 40 years on Christmas Eve day. She was an adopted Grandma to our girls and it was a hard loss for our neighbourhood. So we have made ourselves available to their family for support during the last week. On Boxing day their daughter was finally able to arrive so my husband and I cooked them a Christmas dinner for their family. I had never cooked such a big meal before. Everything turned out great except for the gravy, but how often does that turn out? (not very often for me, I think I need a few lessons in gravy making.) The family was able to enjoy sometime together and I proved to myself that I am an okay cook.

I thought that this Christmas break was going to be difficult with the girls being home. They so enjoy school and weekends are usually too long from them. My oldest has been asking about school but I gave them workbooks for Christmas so she went to her desk in her room to work on them for awhile. I am so glad that they enjoy school, sometimes they have difficult days because of teasing and trying to fit in. But everything is a lesson to be learned. I am thankful that they are home so that I have the opportunity to build into them and spend some quality time with them. This break has been very good for our family. I thought that it would be difficult because I had to leave my job and stay home. But I am finding that it has been one of the best decisions and most rewarding decisions I have ever made.

I remember thinking in my early 20's that I was going to be a career woman, that I may not even get married. It was all going to be about me. Now here I am at 36 and so enjoying being home with my family. Volunteering at the girls school, being home for them when they get off the bus, making meals, taking the girls to various lessons, doing my husbands books (acutally I don't really enjoy that one), and getting time to write. Another book is in the works. (maybe I can make money on that one) I don't miss all the stuff that we used to buy or eating out all the time because I don't have time to make anything. The cuts that we had to make haven't really changed a lot. My fibromyalgia keeps me home a lot so I'm not always going shopping and tempted to buy a lot of things we don't really need. I am very thankful for the lessons that I have learned over the past year, and I am looking forward to the year ahead and more lessons to learn.

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