Thursday, December 18, 2008

Holiday Havoc

This year, I thought I was finally going to get it together for the holidays so I started making Christmas plans before Thanksgiving… but then, it was as if I blinked and it was suddenly December 15th! Oh my! What happened? Well, I can’t exactly explain what has kept me so distracted lately (besides ice storms, power outages, computer mishaps, possible career changes, and the usual life dramas) but I can tell you that when Monday arrived this week, the yearly round of Christmas panic hit head on! Christmas panic involves frazzled nerves, lots of pacing and running in circles, stomach disorders, pulling hair and scribbling down impossible to-do lists that must be executed in a ridiculously limited amount of time. Overall, it’s a big, messy, emotional, frantic waste of energy and effort. But do I ever learn? Apparently not. As of Monday I hadn’t made or purchased a single gift (except for Caden’s) or really put any thought whatsoever into what was going to go down this Christmas season. With our extended families we usually have anywhere from 8-10 Christmas related events scheduled in like a 6 day period. It’s obviously too much to accomplish in such a short time frame, causing lots of stress, and in general, as wonderful as it is to see everyone, all of that rushing and traveling makes the holidays a pretty miserable experience. So this year, I attempted to make Christmas *less* by turning 3 of the events into one and planned the much anticipated “Caden’s Grandparent Christmas Dinner Party” here at our house.

Great idea, really. But, unfortunately for me, I planned it for this Saturday, December 20th! As of today Thursday December 18th, I have merely purchased the *ingredients/supplies* for the gifts and the big Christmas dinner but I have not yet begun to make, assemble and bake said gifts and feast. According to my to-do list, I am supposed to organize, shoot and print the yearly grandparent photo gift of the Life and Times of Mr. C, make baked gifts, hand make Christmas ornaments, design and execute a Christmas Package concept (don’t ask!), as well as cook a traditional Christmas turkey feast with three homemade desserts (menu ordered by Caden) in two days. Did I mention Caden has a holiday party at school tomorrow and that I have a cookie swap on Sunday? Apparently I am expecting a Christmas Miracle!

So it has been 3 days since Monday, what HAVE I been doing besides aimlessly wandering about the stores with the other last minute shopping masses? Well other silly time wasting stuff of course! Before I admit my stupidity, I might add that the Christmas induced panic makes one formulate rash decisions. While we were decorating the Christmas tree, we put on the ornaments that Caden and I created last year and (while feeling deeply overwhelmed by the effects of their adorability) I asked him if this was something he wanted to do again this year. Here are last year’s ornaments:

Caden’s Christmas ornaments were a huge hit last year, as a result I thought perhaps if we kept it simple, another batch could be executed in a timely manner. Caden seemed into it, so while he was at pre-school Monday morning I began the process of creating 42 polymer clay ornament blanks for him. By the time I was finally finished, my very frivolous five year old had spent a morning at pre-school and an afternoon of playing and was therefore no longer interested in making the ornaments (that I just invested 7 incredibly precious hours in shaping/baking); in its place, he decided he wanted to give his grandparents framed Masterpieces! Yet to be made I might add!!!

Great! Can’t exactly force my little artist to create what I want can I? So instead of letting all that work go… I felt the irrational need to waste more countless hours as I was compelled to design and paint the ornaments myself! Ah yeah, that was instead of doing the other more important things on the mega giant to-do list! And worst of all, the ornaments are turning out to be rather tragic renditions of the “Christmas Cougar” and I am SO not finished! They would have been much cuter had Caden stuck to the plan!

Stay tuned for the reveal of those little lovelies as well as lots more Christmas fun! Watch the struggle and panic as I attempt to get through the Holiday Havoc with zing and panache! Or not! I hope you all are enjoying YOUR Holiday season!

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