Last Sunday we decided to go for all the gusto we could. Not only did we have The Boy's party that evening, but earlier in the day we went out to find The Tree. Due to scheduling conflicts with the now almost-grown and grown children not everyone could participate, but it did not deter us from our mission.
We have been going to the same tree farm since before the younger kids were born. I think we started going there when Cutie's dad was in grade school, and we've continued every year since - except for last year. Some years we make it out there the weekend after Thanksgiving, and some years we wait until later. Some years it's so cold we choose our tree with great abandon and haste. Other years we take our time, playing hide-and-seek in the forest. But always there is hot chocolate, puppy chow, and Santa Claus.
When the older kids were in their teens they moaned and groaned about the tradition. Now Eldest Girl insists we go along with her family. I only wish Cutie's family was in town so they could join us. The Girl has even gotten into the spirit of things.
This year we met Eldest Girl and her family at the farm. We got there early and The Boy suggested we go into the barn to get some hot chocolate.
"That's not how we do things," The Girl reprimanded him.
It warmed the cockles of my heart. Especially later that night when we watched videos of her riding the hay wagon up to cut a tree when she was two.
Because we in the Work household desire the utmost from our Collective Christmas Experience we will be putting the tree up tonight, a WHOLE TWO WEEKS before Christmas. An amazing feat, that. I mean considering the fact we have been known to wait until two days before The Day to do the very same thing and all.
We are nothing if not All About The Christmas Spirit in our home.
However, since we will be hosting Christmas dinner this year for our family now that Mom is dining with the Heavenly Host, it seemed only proper to have the decorations up. After all, WE are the grandparents now.
We even have a gift or two to put beneath the tree, thanks to Amazon. And may I just say this? Christmas shopping this year has been almost FUN. I've done 99% online, and I've never been happier. I can shop to my heart's content and never get tired, my feet don't hurt, I don't have to fight crowds, I don't get cranky, and if I get hungry or thirsty or have to go to the bathroom it's all within a few steps of my comfortable "mall" right in my lil' ol' easy chair. I even have someone to shop with - my good friend Clarabelle. We make a MEAN team.
So tonight we'll drag out all the decorations. Hubster will gripe, and so will The Boy. I'll set up the video camera and start baking cookies, and we'll play the same old Christmas music we always play while we decorate. Then I'll package up the cookies, take down the video camera, and we'll put away the boxes until New Year's Day. I'll go watch Holiday Inn, and afterward we'll all go to bed.
And the traditions will continue.