oh Christmas

I hope in the new year I’ll be back to updating this more frequently. It isn’t like we’ve had a shortage of goings on. We’ve been very busy– parties, visits, visits from others, cookie making with my friend L (we’ve been friends pretty much for over 20 years, yow–the cookie making had an excellent 80s soundtrack too)movies even (hey, we all loved Enchanted–goofy and sweet). Christmas was a combination of wonderful, not great, nice and sad. The Bean fully believes in Santa and was unbelievably excited. She was thrilled when she found out Santa gave the carrots to the reindeer. Her visit to see Santa on the 23rd (pictures to be posted soon) even made Santa verklempt (she laid her head on his shoulder and said “I love you Santa.”) . Christmas morning was so full of amazement that I could see the sparks shooting out of her head.

J and I also exchanged gifts we both really loved or needed (my favorite was a Jack and Sally music box that plays This is Halloween). Later the situation appeared again which was unfortunate. It really helps to have people to talk about it with (yurk, awkward sentence that). We did have a nice dinner at my Mom’s with friends,family and some of C’s kids. It was our turn to bring the 15! pounds! of mashed potatoes (and some rolls). I got them peeled and J helped as I cut them up and put them into the three boiling pots of water (now that helped the lack of humidity in our house). I really love how we do little things together, getting the chance to talk and sharing some of the small things that go into making the day, a life.

Sadly later in the day C (my stepfather, I’ve known him since I was 11) had another stroke. Two of his kids (and 5of the 9000 grandkids) are here and have been able to help my mother and give him some comfort. I have to say that whatever differences my mother and I have had the care and huge amount of work that goes into caring for C and keeping his spirits up is admirable. She has so much to do she doesn’t have a lot of time for herself. A lot of what she has to do is hard, meticulous (C is diabetic now too and can’t walk much so she prepares his meals and she hates cooking)and unpleasant. We’re doing what we can to help, which feels like not much. At least J’s visits to C always cheer him up and I can make food every so often and we can do dog and cat duty.

We also have a friend that just found out his young daughter has leukemia and another friend who is having some complications with his illness. Spare a moment if you can to give them a thought of health and ease.

I will be glad to see the hind end of 2007. It has been an ugly year. I/we are lucky for each other, for our good friends (a fun AND supportive bunch with kids for the Bean to grow up with), for living in a place we really like in a nice house. We have great cats that, for the time being at least, are healthy and relatively young. These things have kept us from despair with the various tragedies, small and large, that have been so ubiquitous. 2008 has to be better. It just has to.