This has got to be the shortest Christmas season ever in the history of mankind.
A super-late Thanksgiving bears some of the blame. For us, the fact that one of our dear ones isn’t home until today and another not until A WEEK FROM TOMORROW is an even worse factor. It won’t really feel like Christmas until all my babies are here with us.
Then, too, we normally draw for stockings on the day after Thanksgiving, but this time around we didn’t manage it until last weekend. This is a tradition we started some years ago – we each draw a name and fill that person’s stocking. It’s some of the most fun gift-buying I do every year, finding small items that are special to that particular loved one. A pocket volume of Oscar Wilde short stories was a great one for Middle Sister last year. Beef jerkey is a staple of The Husband’s stocking. Travel-sized lotion for Oldest Sister was appreciated and also funny – she had used mine so often it she’d emptied it. A strange and wonderful toy called “Orbies” for The Boy – colorful, gel-filled orbs that expand like crazy when wet. He had bowls of Orbies sitting around the house for weeks afterward.
With two of us far away this year, we had to employ technology to complete our drawings. Epic tech fails nearly scuttled the whole thing, with Middle Sister, The Husband, and I arguing over the best way to get around the breakdowns we kept encountering. Finally we pulled together a Skype session with Oldest on Middle Sister’s laptop and a Facetime session with The Boy on my iPad.
What normally happens when we draw is that someone gets their own name…over and over again. Some years we’ve had to draw six or seven times to get it right. With video chat connection blipping every minute or so, we crossed our fingers and started pulling names out of a basket. Miracle! We got it right on the first drawing!
I haven’t even begun my shopping for my secret stocking person yet. I’ve thought about what to look for, but keep thinking, “Oh, there’s plenty of time. The season’s only just started.” That attitude is going to put me into an emergency situation in no time. Good thing my weekend starts today – let the stocking-filling begin!