Scaling Back

While Dad and I were putting up our outside lights today, it was getting more and more unpleasant because a cold wind was blowing and the lights were getting more and more tangled. As we moved inside to work on the tangles, both of us began to complain  about aches in various body parts.  We tried to joke about the situation, and Dad said he felt like we were in the middle of a Carol Burnett skit. He was Tim Conway. (I know that all of you are too young to get the reference, so check it out on YouTube)

We moved inside to work on the tree, and I observed that more branches no longer fitting into the fake trunk. There are more needles on the floor than last year, and I wonder how many years are left. Dad says this all makes the tree appear more realistic. I think it is a metaphor about our lives.

The lights are up and I place the red and gold beads on the tree alone, because Dad’s aching bones needed a rest. I am writing my thoughts to you now so I have the evening free to watch last night’s episode of Madam Secretary. The real reason, to be honest, is that I am a bit sore myself.  But I want to get this tree done so it is all up and ready for Lily’s visit tomorrow, so I can’t rest for long.

I recall those days when I strung up popcorn and cranberries and we made homemade ornaments. It was back then that I made dozens upon dozens of Christmas cookies and sent out a ton of Christmas cards. That’s not happening to that extent any more. I told Dad that I am thinking of sending cards only to people older than eighty-five.

I thought decorating the tree was now becoming a chore, but as I looked at the ornaments, I realized I was wrong. Each one was a memory.

I saw Jamie’s “baby’s 11th and 13th Chrismas” ornaments and smiled. I saw the wooden Peanuts characters and recalled making them and giving a set to the mother of Dad’s friend in Salt Lake City. Several ceramic ornaments brought me back to those days of going to those ceramic classes, while others reminded me of trips I took and brought back souvenir ornaments.

I look forward to the songs as well as watching the movies, particularly my favorites: Love Actually, The Holiday, and White Christmas. None of us likes A Christmas Story, a revelation which I think was quite shocking to Geoff. I promised him I will give it another try.

So now it’s back to work. Are all of you in the Christmas spirit yet?

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