Lest anyone should think that everyone in North America had a white Christmas, allow me to present Exhibit 1:
That’s the snowiest part of my front yard. I had to be sure to get a picture before the sun shifts. One sunbeam and it’ll all be over. I’m fighting bitterness. How am I supposed to teach my kid to drive in snow when this is all we get? The weather system that dropped snow on so many of you dumped an additional 2″ of rain on us Christmas Eve.
Other than being left out in the snow department, we did have a good Christmas here. We decided to try a minimalist approach this year. Everyone got the same Christmas budget from which we bought a few gifts. I had seven under the tree, most of them from my Mom, who is not a minimalist. The remainder of the budget was given in cash to be used on the after-Christmas discounts. I wasn’t sure it would go over, but everyone agreed it was worth a try, and it worked wonderfully. No one was overwhelmed with stuff, it was all easy to put away, and now we can go buy what we wanted but didn’t get for less than it would have cost a couple of days ago. It was almost as nice as the first Christmas we paid cash for everything. It was such a pleasure to sit back and watch the kids play with their new toys, knowing that there would be no credit card bills coming in the mail. (BTW, that’s easier than you think. We did it when our income was at an all-time low. Pre-planning and lay-away–those were my secrets to success.)
As the years pass and time goes faster, I find I don’t enjoy Christmas quite as much as I used to. It sneaks up on me and I don’t anticipate it like when I was a kid. My kids are older, too, so Christmas morning is a lot more laid-back. I don’t set my alarm to get up fifteen minutes before the kids are allowed out of their rooms so I can get my first hit of caffeine in peace. It’s a different dynamic altogether but I can’t complain. It’s part of life. As long as I’m breathing, it’s a good Christmas. Not white, but good.