Sunday, December 16, 2012

A weekend of such mixed emotions

The weekend started with such a horrible feeling in my heart. Learning of yet another mass shooting and this time with little ones as the victimes, less than two weeks before Christmas. It just made me realize all the more how lucky I am - now and always.

While that was with me all the rest of the weekend (and will be for a long time - and I will be more and more proactive about things) I also had a very wonderful weekend.

I spent 7 hours on Friday baking and decorating cookies. I could have seen it as one huge duty I needed to do, but I didn't. I made between 450-500 cookies. I had already planned my talk for Sunday School, practiced it and polished it as well as it could be. I could see the house would be cleanable in a whirlwind vacuum and dusting on Saturday, so I set to baking.

My mother in law (just home from a cruise and a bit under the weather) said "I am beginning to hate Christmas". How sad really. To her it just seems like one big duty. Oh, if she would only stop thinking of all the "duties" and just enjoy - take in how excited her grandson gets. Notice how people light up with a cheerful smile. Make something yummy and watch people enjoy. Sure, some of the prep can be difficult or labor intensive, but just hold onto how wonderful the payoffs are. That's what I do!

Friday night I organized all the baked goods for Sunday School, sunday platform, the Cookie exchange party, my husband's holiday party, my son's school teachers and the left overs for the family. I cleaned the kitchen and then soaked in the tub and readied for Saturday.

I spent most of Saturday cleaning. I picked up the family room, moved the clutter out of the basement, tidied my son's room, got my husband to dust, my older son to run the vacuum, and I made the salad and then got everything arranged/set for the party. We had a wonderful, wonderful party. There were 40 people, 14 of them kids. Oh my goodness, their wonder and joy is so catching. I had my son set up a couple of trains - kid heaven. The basement was a rec room fun fest. They were having so much fun doing everything else, they didn't even want to stop and make the gingerbread trees! Only the arrival of Santa got them interested in leaving the fun stuff and then they were ready to make the gingerbread trees after Santa's visit.

After the party I was smiling ear to ear. I was tired, but happy. To wrap up the day, my husband and I cuddled on the couch with a spiked eggnog with rum (and oh boy, a good eggnog is sooooo much better than the cheap stuff!)

I got a full night of sleep, showered and loaded up the car for today's Sunday. I was giving the talk today which is already a bit stressful, but today was the first ever chorus rehearsal too and I had a stand-in for my usual role. Then, I had a gay/lesbian panel for the sex. ed class I usually teach, and I had a stand in teacher for that class too. And it all went so well - the talk, the chorus rehearsal, the guest panel. Yay!!!!

We came home, ate a quick lunch and then I went to my first ever cookie swap. It was fun to see what people brought to exchange and I even got to finally meet a local person who I have gotten to know a bit through Facebook and that was nice.

I came home to a family happy to see me, easy leftovers to heat up for dinner and now I'm sitting here with the family in the family room. We're listening to the Muppets, A Green and Red Christmas while I write this blog and my husband reads stuff on the computer and the little guy is drawing pictures.

Now if I can just hold onto this feeling. I keep going back to those children, those innocents slain by a crazy man, but then I have to let it go. I will be proactive. I will speak up, but I also need to enjoy my life and move on. I also realize, only not fully enough, innocents die around the world every day and some of it due to our own actions.

But I also need to grab these wonderful, peaceful moments and savor them.

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