SUMMARY: Santa Claus is coming to town. Tonight. I hope I've been good.
I haven't done much decorating this year, just no time. But my tree's lights are twinkling quietly in the background, and oddly I don't miss the Darth Vader ornament--which I hang every year but this time didn't get around to--saying "[inhale]You are not a Jedi yet, young Skywalker[inhale]" every time I turn on the lights. I realize that its absence detracts from the whole Christmas spirit thing that I try to evoke, and yet--huh--nope, don't miss it.
Never did perch the annual dragon atop the tree's highest branch.
But it sure smells wonderful in here every time I step through the door from outside and smell that conifer! And I love the twinkling lights; have always been my favorite part of the tree, along with a wide variety of unusual ornaments. This year, none of my old faves made it--no time--no grinch, no cookie monster, no Thing One and Thing Two flying their kite, no pink panther climbing down the chimney, no Batman descending the rope hanging from his batarang entangled in a tree branch. None of the whole entire box of mostly purple (with some blue) ornaments of all shapes and sizes and themes. Nor the other 3--or is it 4?--boxes of ornaments. So much for spending all that time thinning out the tree so I could hang the collection!
This year, the only ornaments are just half a dozen new ones I bought during the year that I hadn't packed away yet: A sparkly purple spiny thing, a sparkly blue not spiny thing, a blown-glass Leica camera, three silver ornaments with my initials (E L F -- seemed apt), a blue and purple velvety beribboned thing. A bunch of candy canes, which aren't lasting very long I must say.
Didn't get around to setting up the creche--mostly hand-painted by yours truly years ago although goodness knows why, I'm pretty agnostic and think that the God's Only Son story is a nice myth--OK, yeah, I think it's an interesting myth with a nice message (peace on earth, good will towards men, can't ask for much better than that)--which means that the dragon bearing the gift of a sparkling orb never made its appearance behind the manger. But that's OK, I eventually got tired of the detail work and so Mr. and Mrs. Christ and their little Christ child and half of the wise men are gorgeous, but the shepherds and camels are a little spotty, and the sheep and cattle--ha! Let's just say that I'm sure there were plenty of albino livestock in bethlehem that year.
Christmas is a little different around here.
Have done the little bit of shopping I was planning on doing, and everything is wrapped. Am not planning on baking.
After the diverse family entities trickle gradually to my parents' house tomorrow afternoon, my whole extended family looks like will be together for the first time in maybe years. I hope I can get a few photos before they all start trickling away again to their various corners of the valley or the country.
I'm thinking that I'll give the dogs their really big juicy bones for gnawing as soon as I'm done here, try to keep them on the sheets I'll spread out and off the carpet. Ha! As if!
Christmas music is playing quietly in the background. Life is good.
Merry Christmas, everyone.