Its’ Christmas Eve. During the day, children await nightfall; at night, children await the arrival of Santa Claus. This year, December has taken on a life of its own. The days have passed too quickly. The ingredients for my traditional Christmas morning cranberry nut bread remain in the refrigerator, untouched. The turkey remains frozen. The house remains in disarray. Fortunately, my Husband is understanding and our daughter too young to notice.
Today, I called a time-out on December’s frenetic pace. Rather than bake cookies or clean the house, we headed to Southern Hills Ice Rink in Naha. There, we introduced [S] to ice skating and wearing gloves. (In an attempt to protect skater hands from injury during a fall, gloves are required to skate at Southern Hills.) Fortunately, small cars and chairs were available to rent for those uncomfortable or unable to skate on their own. The extra support gained from pushing [S] on the ice ensured I remained upright, despite last donning a pair of skates nearly 30 years ago.
As we drove home, Russell and I discussed tonight’s dinner plans. Popcorn? Baguette, fruit, and cheese? Lasagna? Russell suggested I cook our Christmas meal this evening, allowing Christmas to be a mostly kitchen-free day. So it came to pass that I prepared a spinach mushroom lasagna this evening. In between baking and broiling, we were able to read the Christmas story and help [S] prepare a note and snack for Santa and his reindeer. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen her more proud of efforts. After much to-do, [S] headed to bed with Clement C. Moore’s ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas as her bedtime story. As she dreams of visions of sugarplums, Santa got to work putting together her first bicycle.
While this year’s Christmas no doubt appears unorthodox to some, for me it is a liberating departure from tradition. Tomorrow, I will be focused on Russell and [S], not the oven and stove top. Of course, the turkey will be cooked. But we will leave that to the New Year.
From our family to yours, Happy Christmas.