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photo by Sheri Dixon

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas in the Twilight Zone

So we're building this house. What a happy day it will be for everyone around me when I can say "So we BUILT this house"- I know ya'll are getting plumb wore out from hearing about it.

But lets talk about ME.

More specifically, lets talk about the mess our current house is in, the lack of amenities in our new house, and how that all relates to and affects the Christmas Spirit in our family this year.

Because we're supposed to be moving (first promised "in by Thanksgiving" then "in by Christmas" then "probably in by the housewarming we've already sent invitations out for")I was loathe to haul out the boxes and decorate this house. Why do that when we'd have to take it all down right in the middle of the season?

Of course, there's nothing to hang a decoration on over yonder yet.

The one thing Alec requested that we retrieve from the holiday boxes was Christmouse.

Christmouse is a little stuffed rodent who hops (with the help of Alec, and his brother and sister before him) from one numbered pouch to the next from December first through the 24th.

So we lugged the boxes out of the attic and scrounged around till we found Christmouse, then pushed aside samples of stain and sealer, made a weak attempt at eliminating cobwebs from his spot on the wall, and- thanks to a loose nail- hung him crookedly in place.

Ta Daa. Oooooooh. Festive.

The tree is up- it's always up. It is also, however, somewhere behind a gabazillion boxes awaiting packing and still decorated with September's decorations, which are fall leaves and sunflowers.

Fa la la la la
La la.
La.
La.

How to describe our house?

In the best of times, I'm a very casual housekeeper. If there is a game trail from one room to the next, and the bathroom fixtures aren't actually talking back to us, we're good.

Oh, I've got my 'pet things' that have to be done for me to feel like we're living in a house and not any ol' landfill- the dishes must be done, the bed must be made, and the laundry clean if not folded and put away.

With all the time spent at the new place, and the lack of energy and basic give-a-shit-ness after working all day at the new place, the house is...startling. And not in a good way.

Pack rats all, our stuff has taken on new configurations and astoundingly, the more we haul out, go through and throw away, the less neat the house is. It's even spreading from the bedrooms (main repositories of clutter) to the hallway to the living room to yea verily the kitchen counters that have somehow shrunk from 2 ft wide to about an inch and a half wide.

I took a deep breath and with a dramatic sweeping gesture I made enough room on the kitchen counter to bake a single solitary batch of sugar cookies, which we will frost and sprinkle tonight.

My family is terrific.

They're right there beside me, behind me, doing all things asked and unasked in an amazing constant never ending show of love and devotion that humbles me and makes me want to do more for them.

More Christmas.

More decorations.

More cookies.

More patience.

More time.

More.

We'll be working at the new house tomorrow- Christmas Eve.

After waking and opening presents Christmas morning, we'll be back out there.

Working.

Making our home a reality.

Together.

And I realize that we don't need More.

Because what we're doing together is enough.

After a hellishly difficult year, we're together.

And that's enough.

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