December 24, 2011

Ready for Christmas

The last couple of days, we’ve had a flurry of cooking and cleaning, getting ready for the Christmas holidays. The elderly man who tunes our piano made a special trip to the house on Thursday to make sure our holiday music would be in tune. We’ve made countless trips to the grocery store. When the kids are all home, we go through about three gallons of chocolate milk each day: they consider in the perfect food after a workout. Each day that we get closer to Christmas brings more of our extra kids home from college, so we’ve had a gang in the living room every evening, talking and playing games.

The out-of-town family has arrived, which means text messages from Urban Sophisticate as she does her traditional last-minute Christmas shopping trip with my father. Taekwondo Nephew and Dandelion Niece showed up at my house early this morning, volunteering to be my sous chefs, and helpfully chopped up vegetables while I prepared food for Christmas dinner. My husband and the rest of the gang are busy cleaning, which is a never-ending job in this household. Shaggy Hair Boy, as usual, is at the piano, filling the house with jazz music as we work. My kids all learned early on that the way to get out of doing chores was to play the piano -- I can never bring myself to ask them to stop playing so that they can clean.

My kids had given themselves an athletic challenge — which was to run 100 miles in December. Because my daughter is leaving on a trip the day after Christmas, the goal morphed into running 100 miles before Christmas Eve. With-a-Why had to drop out of the challenge because he strained something in his foot and was forced to rest, but the other three kids were determined to reach their goal, despite the end-of-semester busyness.

Beautiful Smart Wonderful Daughter finished the 100 miles easily —running anywhere from 5 to 10 miles every time she went to the gym. Boy in Black missed some days during a stretch when he was taking finals and grading exams, but then he caught up by running 10 or 12 miles at a time. Shaggy Hair missed some days when he was off visiting his girlfriend, so yesterday he still had 19 miles to go. He went off to the gym early in the day, right after his piano lesson, and said, “I plan to be there for hours.” More than three hours later, he sent everyone in the family a text message: he’d completed his goal.

The weather has been unseasonable warm, but this morning we woke up to snow. That means it’s time to build a fire in the fireplace as we gather to celebrate the holidays.


Anonymous said...

Merry Christmas to you and yours!

Lomagirl said...

Blessings on you all this day! (Stealing time for blogs as I feed the new one.)

fairbetty said...

Merry Christmas! I hope you are having a wonderful holiday!

Kyla said...

Merry Christmas!