A very sad day in our household...the Christmas decorations have begun to come down.
I know, for a lot of people this is pretty late to still have the decorations up - but we just haven't had the time this year. It's been kind of nice having it up a while longer, considering this Christmas seemed to pass by way too quickly. Odd considering that I had 2 weeks off this year. But the 2 weeks were filled with so much stress and last-minute preparations and baking and candy-making, it wasn't what I wanted it to be. I had grand delusions of long moments each evening in our front room (the 'sitting' or what I call the 'reading' room), drinking hot chocolate and just sitting in the glow of the tree lights. As it turns out, I probably only clocked about 10 minutes of evening tree-glow time.
C'est la vie. Maybe next year. Maybe next year I also won't ruin 4 batches of fudge before I realize my candy thermometer is broken. Maybe next year I won't be so ambitious as to make 5 kinds of candies, too many varieties of cookies, so many homemade gifts...yeah...that's probably not going to happen. Those things are the things I love to do most...gift people with things I've made with love. But at least maybe next year I will plan ahead a little more and not be doing everything so last-minute. Of course, the ice storm that knocked out our power for 12 hours the Friday before Christmas (of course, the day I was planning to do the bulk of my baking!) - so maybe next year Mother Nature will be a little more cooperative, too.
All in all though, it was a great Christmas. Our first Christmas in our new home. The first time I've been able to host my family's Christmas gathering after waiting so many years. Good times with family and friends...and our daughter had a wonderful Christmas, even though this was the year she learned the truth about the jolly man in the red suit (a sad, sad moment for ME as well as her).
We also all got a little closer to God this Christmas, and that is what I am most thankful for. So goodbye Christmas, thank you for the wonderful memories - we can't wait to see you again next year.