Holiday Hangover

After weeks of shopping, knitting, sewing, cooking, entertaining, cleaning, our first Christmas in the new house was a success. Here are some of the highlights:

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As I have been known to do, I picked out a Christmas tree with zero foresight or appreciation for spatial reasoning. That’s my 10 year old for scale. And that’s the tree that ate my entire dining room. It only took two vehicles and four neighbors to get said tree into my house and upright.

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I made a bunch of gifts, including the above hat that I finished on Christmas night. Note to self–start knitted gifts before November to avoid frantic knitting on Christmas night.

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The final tally of homemade gifts: 2 hats, 2 scarves, 3 pairs of mittens, 6 dishcloths, 3 t-shirt quilts, and 6 bottles of vanilla extract. Not too shabby.

Then, we have just a small fraction of why you will find me living in the gym for the next year:

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Yeah…my jeans may just suffocate me due to Christmas week feasting. If the tenderloin, shrimp, and bourbon meatballs weren’t enough, we also had a giant turducken, about 100 turducken paninis, cookies, cakes, sangria, margaritas and more. In spite of all the busy chaos, we still had fun:

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Now, I need to sleep for a week, diet for 100 years, and dig my laundry room out from under the pile that has swallowed it.

Battling the Post-Christmas Crash—Or What Happens When a Manic Woman With OCD is Suddenly Project-Less

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For the past several weeks, I’ve either been knitting, sewing, or shopping like a maniac. I frantically finished teacher gifts, only to cast on for the final hat I’ve yet to complete. While we are scaling Christmas down this year (in theory anyway), I still found myself more stressed and pressed for time than I had expected. With only two days left, I’ll be cooking, cleaning, and knitting on than infernal hat with the delusional hope that I can finish it all in time.

In the craziness that pervades the Christmas bonanza, I also start thinking ahead to after Christmas. We all have plenty of Christmas traditions, but inevitably still experience that post-holiday crash. The kids are bummed that it’s over, and my project-oriented, OCD subconscious feels cast adrift with no direction or purpose. To remedy this ennui, and help alleviate the kid’s stir-crazy antics, we try to incorporate a few post-Christmas traditions so that they still have something to look forward to once their gift-a-plooza ends. Here are just a few of the small things we do:

  • New Year’s Eve fireworks—This is Louisiana, after all, and it’s our God-given right to blow crap up in the name of celebration. For $20 bucks, we can get the kids enough firepower to annoy our neighbors and keep them occupied for hours.
  • New Year’s Day Meal—This last-gasp feast includes all of those foods that superstition tells us will bring good luck and fortune in the new year. Diets are for January 2nd.
  • The Feast of the Epiphany King Cake—As the official start of the Mardi Gras season,  Epiphany is a great excuse for the first King Cake of the year. If I have time, I make it, but if not, every store around here will have one.
  • New puzzle—Now that our dining room is empty of Christmas decorations, and we don’t anticipate formal entertaining for a while to come, we get a new puzzle to work on throughout the month.
  • Selfish knitting/crafting—Now that I’ve spent months on gifts for others, I’ll cast on for that sweater I’ve been eye-balling in a Harry Potter knitting magazine. I’m a nerd like that.

So, while the next two days will probably still be full of frantic holiday prep, taking time to plan for some type of small, post-Christmas something may help ease the sting that comes from knowing that we all have to get back to the real world next week.

For now, I’m going to make a cocktail. After all, that real world ain’t coming until next week, and I think that I deserve it for the kids’ bathroom I’m about to clean.