Monday, December 14, 2015

Start your engines

    The tree is up but undecorated. Even that, though, is a breakthrough.
We have a massive and pretty darn good looking artificial tree out in the shed. Rather than disturb the colony of mice that I’m sure is happily nestled in its branches, we went out and bought yet another fake tree. However, this purchase wasn’t due to any altruistic thoughts of local wildlife, but because the old one is so unwieldy that it’s an Olympic event to get it up the hill, into the house, and then stagger the three separate parts of it through the house to the living room, sweeping knickknacks and armchairs to the floor as we go. 

          This year I bought battery operated window candles at the local dollar store. The good news in that I didn’t have to run football-field lengths of extension cords all over the house for my usual electric lights. The bad is that the new candles give off a feeble jaundiced yellow light, barely visible from the street. 

          As for the gifts, we are the perfect venue for a low-energy, under-achieving thief. Every single present (except the ones for my husband, which are cleverly squirreled away in my closet) we’ve bought so far is heaped in a designated pile in the dining room. I’m afraid to wrap anything yet since I’m a visual learner and this is the only way I can tell who’s getting what.

          Today I made cut out Christmas cookies, the annual event in which I remind myself why I really hate making cut out Christmas cookies. 

          Still, I haven’t hit the panic wall yet. I figure three days from now ought to be about right – when for instance, I remember the perfect gift for so-and-so, and I’m one day past the mail order time frame. But that’s nothing. Real, Armageddon-like panic is Christmas Eve when we realize that one grandson has only 5 items for his stocking, while the other two have 8. 

You know that any kid worth his salt counts and compares.


  1. What a great post, and I can feel the Christmas excitement in your house. A lovely post and I enjoyed the cartoon. Thank you, and Merry Christmas and A Very Happy New Year to you all. I am a little early wishing you that but the nearer it gets the busier we will all be.

    1. Hi, Denise. How lovely to hear from you, and I'm looking forward to your shiny new blog in January!

  2. Oh my, you brought back those panicky days! I've simplified my shopping and my life, completely.

  3. I thought "retired" was more time to plan and coordinate this stuff. Good luck, you will get through it.

  4. It gets harder each year or I have less energy each year.

  5. I bought two of those battery operated candles too and a pack of AA batteries. The tiny little light was barely visible. Each candles holds two batteries which lasted through one night. So I can't afford the batteries! :) Your posts are great and always so true!!

  6. Cinnamon and panic is a perfect summation of these last few days.

  7. The unseasonably warm weather here has fooled me into thinking that Christmas is still very far away.

  8. That's a shame about the feeble candle lights, have you tried brand new extra strength batteries? I always buy alkaline energizer batteries, they last for ages.

  9. The year I decided that I no longer believed in the christian theology was the year I jettisoned christmas. never been happier. oh I love to look at other people's trees and decorations but I have no desire to play that game. I do give winter holiday gifts to the grandkids (mostly money unless they tell me something specific) and my sister and sometimes, to my kids if I think of something I know they will like or want but I refuse to get drawn into the hysteria.


Thanks for stopping by and I'd love to hear what you think.