Friday, December 23, 2011

Much Love To The Elves of The World

This is the second Christmas that we have ever spent with my husband deployed.  I suppose in 12 years, I should actually consider myself lucky this is only the second.
It is also fitting, I suppose.  He missed The Big One's first Christmas, and now he is missing The Littlest One's first Christmas.  He missed our first Christmas as a family, and now our last Christmas as a military family.
While that may in some morose way be poetic, it is absolutely in no way comforting, and doesn't assist me in making this a magical holiday.  Quite the opposite.
I am very grateful for my Mom, who came home with me for a week after Thanksgiving to help me get started.  With her, I managed to get the tree up, stocking hung, house partially decorated, and start some of my shopping.
Other than that, I have had to get this all together myself.  This is a lot of work.  It takes a ton of planning.  I have done a ton of shopping online.  Thank you, Amazon for giving Amazon Mom members free prime accounts for up to the first year.  It has been a life and wallet saver.  I am pretty sure I should bake something for all the delivery people who have come to my door over and over and over again this year.  If they weren't so busy, we should all be on a first name basis.  Actually, I'm quite sure they all know my name by heart, after seeing it on so many packages.
I have done a ton of shopping on the dl.  I managed to sneak stocking stuffers in under bags of plastic straws and boxes of baby wipes.  I have even whispered to people at registers, asking them to keep certain purchases on the dl as well, and having them quickly double wrap things with a serious poker face on.  To those people, I am thankful.

I have managed to get us to exactly where we normally are the day before Christmas, maybe even a little further ahead since i have been wrapping at night.  We are as ready for Christmas as we can be.  There are two gifts for both sets of parents, things I am making, that will go out a little late, but parents are usually pretty understanding people, and hopefully they will know we love them, and won't be too upset about the late arrival.  In the grand scheme of things, if those are our only casualties, I will be ecstatic.
Of course, there will be tears on Christmas day.  Lots of them.  Missing your spouse on Christmas is hard.  Missing your dad has got to be worse.  The Girls are generally pretty good about it, but we have had some hard moments.  The Big Little One cried at the dinner table the other night.   She was telling me all about what was going to happen on Christmas.  There was a huge lead up of activity, with a culmination of "And then Daddy will come home" after which I had to break her heart by telling her again that it won't happen.  We got through it, though.
So, I'm working on making this the best Christmas it can be.  No Dad.  No other family.  Just us.  I promise to make it the best it can be, no matter how much I have to wrap, how many cookies I have to bake, or how much sleep I lose to see that every single thing is as perfect as it can be.  They will love it, even if a part of their heart is sad.  We all will.  And next year, when we are all together again, we will be even more thankful for the fantastic holiday, and the times we get to spend together, because we will truly understand how special they are, and appreciate them more than many people ever could.
Merry Christmas to All, and may your holiday be as fantastic as possible for you and yours.