Monday, December 24, 2007
The cards went out Saturday. Calling Jeanette from the Book People parking lot on Wednesday afternoon she said, "Just now? You'd better hurry." Then she gave me an awesome printer reference. For the first time ever, the job was done on time, just right. Later I tell Rebecca I'm working on my cards and she laughs, "Now?!! Aren't you a little late?" And to both of them the answer is "No." Emphatically. It's not too late. The general marker is if I can get them into the mail by xmas eve. So this year I'm ahead of the game.
For several years running I've said to John, "I'm not going to bother this year. The kids are getting old. I don't have a good photo. It's a waste." He knows now not to listen. Because once the few cards start coming in, (a trickle down from the waterfall of years ago), I get inspired. I love seeing my friends' kids grow. Or even without kids, love the energy touch. Because that's what it is. No matter what kind of cards I make, I spend hours looking at the list, removing and adding to keep it at a constant number. I handstamp each one. I write notes on most. It's a project demanding time and attention, and it's come to mean Christmas to me. I know it's totally old fashioned and hokey. It's expensive and time consuming. I assume most people don't care. Even the cards themselves are idiosyncratic and obscure. But it means something to me. It's an energy exchange.
Last year my yoga teacher said it was all about lights and cookies. Yes, lights and cookies and cards. The tree up was the start, then the porch lights (thanks G!), then the cards. And that's it. Keeping the stress quotient totally down.It's a no present occasion this year. For the most part that is.
I still happened out into the crowds yesterday, just wandering around, soaking up the flavor. It's perverted I know. I walk out among those buying, buying virtually nothing - oh sure, replacing my shower curtain and picking up the 4th season of The Wire. But not actually buying Christmas presents. I just like to feel the buzz. Then a lovely intimate dinner. I cooked as I did last year. It now feels like tradition. It feels like the right kind of check in, with the family we've chosen, not the one we came with. Today was mellow, helping Wyatt with the finishing touches on his college applications - his work ethic and sense of pacing unparalleled, as he gets this done, stress free as promised, on time before he heads off skiing. It's a sweet time together. With more to come tomorrow as his sister joins us. Simple. Just us. Just fine.