Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Merry Christmas!!

Today is my last day in the office until January 5th, and I am *so* looking forward to the holidays!  Yes, even during a pandemic... even when the Christmas forecast keeps getting warmer and wetter every time I look at it... I am STILL super excited!!

A Covid Christmas will mean less hustle and bustle, and maybe that won't be such a bad thing.  Nowhere to go, nothing to do... beyond Christmas, I am looking forward to a week of just bumming around home.  Netflix binges (I'm lookin' at you, Virgin River Season 2!), trying new recipes in the Instant Pot, snacks and drinks, crocheting and reading, trying out some art supplies, maybe starting a new puzzle... Lockdown means that a lot of my normal post-Christmas activities won't happen (hitting up Boxing Week sales in person, visits with extended family and friends, going to the movies, etc...) but I'm a-okay with hunkering down and making the best of it.

I hope you are all able to do just that - no matter what your situation, make the best of it.  Find the silver linings and soak it up.  And may we all look forward to brighter days coming in 2021.

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year, friends!!


Friday, December 18, 2020

A weekend before Christmas To-Do List!

One week, friends!  ONE WEEK!

Yes, even during Covid days, I am insanely excited for Christmas. Like, butterflies in my tummy excited.  I may be 37 years old, but a little 5-year-old still lives inside of me when it comes to the holidays!!

I know this year will be different.  I know we all have to make adjustments and sacrifices to keep our loved ones safe, and to help ease the burden on our health care system.  But even knowing all of this, you still can't wipe the excited smile off my face.  My favourite time of year is almost HERE!!

So what have I got on for the last weekend before Christmas?  Let's go bullet-form with a bit of a to-do list.  The BEST kind of to-do list, might I say!!

  • Today when I get home from work, I'm going right into Christmas action.  I am SO looking forward to tonight!  I plan to get pizza dough fixings in the bread maker, make my last Christmas treat (pretzels with kisses and m&m's melted on), and finish up my last crochet gift project which is SO close to being done.
  • Once all of that is finished, I am going to pour myself a glass - of rum & eggnog, or Pink Whitney & cranberry ginger ale, I haven't decided which yet - clear off the coffee table, bring down all the wrapping supplies, put on a Christmas movie, and begin WRAP FEST 2020!!  I love going into Elf Mode. Wrapping is my favourite part.  I cannot wait!!
  • I shall take a pause once the pizza dough is ready to make supper - Friday night pizza on top of all the Christmassy fun? Can it get any better?
  • My goal is to keep wrapping - and keep watching Christmas movies - until it is all done. Pause for some popcorn? Some chocolate sampling? Some more drinks? Sure.  Even if it takes til midnight.  I am just going to immerse myself in Wrap Fest and enjoy it, every little bit of it.
  • Saturday morning, there will be some real work to do: wash bedding, vacuuming, tidying.  The usual Saturday morning chores.
  • Once I'm ready for the day, I will bring up all of the containers of cookies and treats from my freezer that I have been stockpiling for weeks.  I will pack up containers of cookies for friends and family.  
  • And then after lunchtime, I shall go delivering!!  I also will take the opportunity while out and about to drop off the last of the auction items still floating around my house.  Nothing better than a pre-Christmas drive around delivering cheer to loved ones!
  • Tomorrow evening is always a special one - the last Saturday before Christmas. I will completely light up my house - every candle, every decoration I have that lights up... then sit in that Christmas glow and watch another movie (planning on The Family Stone) with snacks.  I love that last Saturday night before Christmas!
  • For Sunday, I haven't much planned...which is a good thing, since I expect I'll be pooped from all my hard work on Friday and Saturday! haha!  I'll watch church and probably just spend the day lazing.  Last minute Christmas stuff will probably come up, too.  I'm sure it will be an enjoyable day, regardless!
What have you go on your to-do list for the last weekend before Christmas??  Enjoy folks!

Wednesday, December 09, 2020

And now, as Christmas draws near...

Ummm... anyone know where November went? And almost half of December, for that matter?

Time, she be a-flyin'!

So, it's my favourite time of year.  Even in pandemic times.  In fact, I think I might even like it more, if that's possible.

OK, no, that's not entirely true.  There's an added level of stress, and a provincial premier who one day said, "Yes, you can have Christmas gatherings of up to 10 people for 4 days!" and then two weeks later, said, "No, never mind.  Too much Covid. Shut it down."  So that part - the part where just getting to see my family is against the rules - makes me sad.  Terribly sad.

BUT.  The part where there's no parties or pot lucks or gatherings of any kind the whole month leading up to the big day?  It's kind of... wonderful.  December is always so flipping busy.  And I love it, really I do.  But this year, I'm soaking up the extra time. To bake, and watch movies, and crochet, and snuggle up and be cozy.  I don't hate that part.  Not at all.  I have a very hemitty side that is a-okay with this, in fact.

That said, I do miss normal old gatherings with my friends.  Some of my friends I haven't seen in months, pre-pandemic.  And I do miss them, very much.  I keep reminding myself that when we are finally allowed to gather again, it will feel that much more sweet to see them.

I have also learned not to let myself sink too far into my Hermit Hole.  In the past few weeks, I have had a few door visits with friends.  Where they have to come to my door for some reason, or I have to go to their door for some reason, and we stand a safe distance apart and chat.  I hadn't done that with anyone in a really long time, and it felt good.  Soul-warming.  So it's been a good reminder to me to make sure to keep doing that.  I don't want to go so far into my hole that I might never come back out.

Another thing that happened in November was that I helped host a very successful online auction for our church.  We haven't been able to hold our normal fundraisers, nor will we in the near future (ie, Christmas House Tour, Soup & Sandwich lunches, Irish Tea...) So we decided to do an online auction.  And boy, did our community step UP.  It has been amazing to see the support from near and far.  Overwhelming and so deeply appreciated!  But now we are in the aftermath - of trying to sort out payments and arrangements for getting people their items and putting them in touch with people who provided services, and it is chaotic.  I am a fairly organized person, and I have had trouble keeping everything straight.  80+ people wanting to pay, to pick up their stuff, to know who to call to make their arrangements... it's a LOT!!  So life has been busy with that as well, and we're finally whittling down to the last little bit of it.  Phewf!

Thankfully, the rest of my life is pretty much organized to the max.  I got my house fully decorated in mid-November, and all of my Christmas shopping completely done by December 1st.  Baking is well under way, as are my crocheted Christmas gifts that I have been working on.  I still haven't wrapped, but that is one of my favourite jobs that I usually leave closer to Christmas because I loved doing it so much.  With just over two weeks until the big day, I don't think I should have any trouble getting everything accomplished.

So... I'm feeling pretty good!  It's been a strange year, such a rollercoaster of emotions, that I really feel grateful to be feeling good and mostly happy these days.  There were a lot of days during the spring, and even into the summer, where anxiety gripped me and I didn't feel so good.  So I give thanks for these days when I'm not gripped with anxiousness all the time. 

I know it will be a different Christmas this year.  But I also know it will still be special.  Somehow, we will make it so.  I'm thankful that even though I live in a "Red Zone", the cases are low in our area and the situation isn't as scary here as it is in other places.  And while I know my opinion on vaccines is not shared by everyone, I am so very very grateful that they are coming, and that brighter days are ahead.

We are well into the last month of this train-wreck of a year, and I know it's not just going to end with the flip of a calendar page, but I am so looking forward to saying good-bye to 2020.  I don't know what to expect in 2021, but I'm ready.  And I'm hopeful.