The after-Christmas lull

I love it. The lull, I mean.

Don't get me wrong. I love big family gatherings-- everyone crowded around tables or packed onto the couches and chairs, filling living rooms.

Our festivities began Friday night. We headed to my grandpas church. We outgrew his living room years ago. 92 people, I think, this year. This dear man, his eight children. Many grandchildren. More great-grandchildren. Generations. Tears slipped down his precious cheeks as his family gathered around. Children's children are a crown to the aged.

Saturday morning my mom, my sister and I joined my aunts and their daughters for tea and scones. Two hours of chatting and laughing and remembering. The young women around that table I have played with since I was a little girl. So many childhood memories. Playing "house" in grandma's basement. Board games with grandma- Uncle Wiggly was a favorite. Playing kick-the-can in grandpa and grandma's yard.

Saturday evening, same family. Game night. With aunts and uncles and cousins and children. A noisy game of Taboo. Some Twister with the little ones. Watching my daughter place her left foot when she should be using her right foot. Should I correct her? Nope. Let her play. Then the guys gathered around the table to play some poker. I took our children home and tucked them into bed. Wrote names on stockings for my mom's stairwell. She got new ones this year; wanted me to do the names. I showed her how to add tassels to her prayer shawl. Mom left, Mark returned home. We finished wrapping some gifts, I made some cinnamon rolls and stitched around the edges of some fleece scarves for the boys. Late night. Crawled into bed at 1:30.

Sunday morning. Christmas Eve. Church. Candlelight service. Voices raised to God. Alleluia! Jesus is born! After church we gathered with Mark's family. We began the day with cinnamon rolls and a tasty egg dish. A full day with my husband's family. I love them. Such a boisterous bunch of MEN. Mark has five brothers. And six nephews. I can't count the number of times someone was suddenly 'taken down' in the middle of the living room. Or on the stairs. And then every other brother and nearby nephew would climb on, too. A pile of raucous boys. Lots of laughter. Games. We played Settlers. And I joined my neice for a couple games of Sequence-- we'd gotten it for her for Christmas. Eleven hours in that house on Christmas Eve. But oh-so-much fun.

Monday morning. Christmas Day. Our oldest two climbed into bed with us, dispensing kisses and groggy "I love you's". I love mornings like this. We got up our youngest to join us in bed. We took the stockings down from the mantel and open them, one by one. On our bed, in our jammies, exclaiming over gifts to each other.

After getting ready, we bundled up and walked to my mom's house for breakfast and most-of-the-day there. My parents, my sister and her family. My two brothers. Us. Food, reading from Luke, songs, prayers, gifts. My parents head off to another family event, we stayed to eat a late lunch, then headed home for quick naps. After naps, we headed out to join my parents for a bit, then came home for dinner. And games. My sister taught us a new card game- Nerts. Nertz? Not sure how to spell it but now I know how to play. And another game: Apples to Apples. Mom's consistent choice. Another late night.

Tuesday morning, home. The kids slept until 8:45, which is unheard of at our house. Then Mark got up with them while I slept a bit more. Chocolate-chip bran muffins for breakfast, and then... our Christmas. Ella, then Isaac- "read" about Jesus' birth from their Bibles, and then Mark read while they moved around the Nativity figurines, acting out the story. Then we opened gifts, one by one. And then- my new favorite part of our family Christmas... I'll share all about it in a couple of days. The boys went down for naps, the rest of us rested. My dad took all the guys out to a movie late-afternoon. My sister brought her kids up to play while I happily took down our now-dying Christmas tree. We gathered at mom's for dinner-- tacos-- and talked and laughed and took family pictures by the tree. Then, home.

And today, Wednesday. We are home. It's a lull from our last few days of getting up, heading out for the day, coming home late just to dump everything down and fall into bed. Only to get up again the next morning and go again. Not today. We're home. Getting settled back into our routine. Of sleep, chores (my washing machine is humming as I type), and quiet. Ahhh... I love it.

There's nothing on our agenda until 5:00 tonight, when we get to go hang out with our best friends-- Mike, Amy and their boys-- for dinner. We're ordering Thai food, and we'll put the kids down there and stay up later to eat snacks and play a game or two of Settlers. So fun.

How was your Christmas?

1 comment:

  1. Dec. 27, 2006 - Wish we were there!
    Posted by Michelle
    Not sure where you would have squeezed us in....but I still wish we could have been there to share a day, or even part of a day, with you and your family!!! Sounds like such great fun...and lots of great food!! Give Christmas hugs to everyone for us!


    Dec. 28, 2006 - Sounds so fun!
    Posted by Dana
    This was a peaceful year for us. Some can be hairy - I have no complaints. The kids ate it up. Gifts given but not overwelmed by the getting. And I agree with the lull. The day after is so nice - I read most of the day stopping to help explain and play new game or help build a new toy. Ahhhhh.....
    Now I gotta plan the second half of our year - I love planning!


    Dec. 30, 2006 - Hi
    Posted by AussieinAmerica
    It sounds like you have been having a wonderful time!! Glad you could enjoy these holidays with you family.


Thank you for commenting! I love hearing from you, and I will do
my best to reply back to you in the comment section.