I love the preparations and all the hustle and bustle that the holidays bring, but I always suffer a Christmas hangover, not the kind you're thinking.
The day after Christmas I always miss that great feeling of anticipation. You know the feeling of something big and wonderful on the way. I'm sure that's how Mary felt before she gave birth to Jesus.
The day after there's nothing but leftover food, crumpled wrapping paper, and empty boxes waiting to be trashed. The big events are over. Family has returned home and the decorations need to come down.
I've never been one to immediately take down the Christmas décor. I love the lights, wreaths and tiny singing snowmen. I enjoy drinking my coffee out of my red and green snowflake mug. It always so bittersweet taking it all down, so I wait as long as Bill can stand it before it all must go.
Christmas is my favorite time of year. There's something so special about it. People seem to be a little more jolly, a little more giving and a little more forgiving. It's a magical time.
Students at school get so excited as they anticipate Santa, and their two week break.
So, I'm a little bummed that it went by so fast. It always seems to go by too fast.
This year Bill and I hosted our families for Christmas Eve snacks and games along with Christmas day present exchanges and Christmas dinner. The preparation took weeks, and it was all over too soon.
I've never been a whiz in the kitchen, ask anyone that knows me. So I have no idea why I agreed to make dinner for 12 people! My mom of course agreed to help so I thought it would be a breeze.
Before I get into my meltdown over squash casserole, let's do a little update on the days leading up to Christmas.
A week ago I got a wild hair and decided to add a little red. Call it Christmas spirit, boredom, whatever, the red was added and I love it!
For our Christmas party at school we decided to jump on the "ugly" Christmas sweater train. I was particularly stoked about it so I got crafty. Here is my creation. It was very well received!
We must have had a VERY good boy this year. Santa really overdid himself! I wasn't sure there would be room for all of our guests.
If you are friends of mine on Facebook you've already seen this picture and my declaration that this year was the Christmas of the batteries. For real! I'd also like to declare it the Christmas of Thomas the train. Choo! Choo!
Ok, back to my meltdown. About halfway through our gift exchange, my oldest niece started complaining of an earache. It was hurting her so badly she stopped opening gifts and laid down on my mom. Yikes! So, my sister and my mom left to take her to urgent care to get her checked out. I'm so glad they took her. That poor baby had a pretty bad ear infection.
They were gone for a while, and during this time the natives were starting to get a little restless. The boys/men were in all parts of the house chatting it up and playing with their new gadgets. I started cooking and about halfway through the green bean casserole prep it hit me that I had never cooked for this many people before, I was totally on my own to pull this off, and I had NO IDEA how to put the squash casserole together. It is my mom's recipe and that little baby is locked tight in her head.
Crazy thoughts started taking over and the tears began to flow. I didn't have the potatoes peeled yet or put on to boil for the mashed potatoes. I didn't have the ham out of the fridge yet, the water wasn't boiling for the macaroni, and I couldn't find enough bake ware for it all. MELTDOWN!
As I was trying desperately to hid my tears, my mother-in-law stepped in from watching Billy and started to lend a hand. She also recruited my brother-in-law and my husband.
Even after all the help I just couldn't stop crying. I was M O R T I F I E D. So I snuck off to get myself together.
Soon after my mom, sister, and niece arrived and all was well again. My mom made the squash casserole and we set everything up to eat.
The blessing was said, merry wishes were made, and we dug in.
I'm sure I freaked everyone out. Nobody will want me to host ever again. And now I have a billion Santa plates that will never be used. Wonderful.
I'm sure that's not true, most of it anyway. But I'm pretty sure they all think I'm crazy. Eh, oh well.
What was your Christmas like?
Did any of y'all have a meltdown?
What were your kids favorite gifts?
Merry, Merry Christmas!!! Please don't ask me to make the squash casserole.