Saturday, December 26, 2009

A little bit Grinchy

Christmas shopping tends to bring out one of two sides to me. Some years, I'm giddy with excitement and relish the hustle and bustle of scores of like-minded shoppers chasing a bargain and that elusive perfect gift. Others, I'm not.

Christmas Eve eve was a "not" sort of day. Having been lulled into a false sense of security by the civilised shopping pace in town only a few days before, I ventured back into town again on the 23rd. Apparently, everybody gets paid on the Weds before Christmas because they were all in town. If I hadn't known Judy was at home, I'd have said the entire local population was there. But I didn't start out in a state of Grinchiness. I swear I was relatively upbeat when the woman in the blue station-wagon stole my parking space. The one I'd been sitting waiting for with the indicators flashing while I held up traffic for several minutes. The perfect spot outside the store I needed to go to. But I let it go. Obviously.

When I got to my second stop, queued, then waited again for the "other salesperson who could help me", only to be told that they couldn't do what I wanted because they'd run out of paper, I politely asked if there was another store that offered the same service and left. I didn't even mutter when I got to the next store and saw the long line. Although I may have sighed heavily.

Meanwhile, the day kept getting hotter and somewhere between the photo kiosk and the supermarket, the Grinch made an appearance. Obviously I wasn't giving this much forethought. Because, how could it be any more perfect for a trip to the central supermarket than with bored, tired and hot children in pre-xmas crowds? First came the muttering at the driver who walked away from their car in the queue to enter the mall carpark. Perhaps I missed the memo, but I'm pretty sure that in front of the carpark entry barrier is not a valid parking space. A trip around the block to the second entrance and it was our turn to experience the true joy of the panicked Christmas shopper frantically filling their trolleys with food. It seems the fact that the supermarket is closed for an entire day (Gasp!) necessitates frantic food-gathering worthy of a Y2K scare. I muttered, I griped and I snarked and I made it out with the essentials we really did need now. Like toothpaste. And chocolate. I think I managed to come out still relatively sane, but I wouldn't swear to it.

Luckily Christmas looked up from there. I finished all the baking and present creating after the shopping, plus we had our annual tour around the city admiring all the Christmas lights, which meant Christmas Eve was a bit more relaxed. All I had to do was handsew my Mum's new oven gloves closed, take her to an appointment and take the kids to the children's Christmas Eve Mass.

Christmas Day, the kids actually slept in and didn't wake us until after 7am. A result of letting them stay up late 2 nights in a row. :) We had a fabulous day with my sister and her husband who seem to be vying for favourite rellie status as they spoilt the kids terribly. Everybody overate as usual which relieved me of the need to make dinner for them. There was just one dampener on the day - we're all missing our family Santa.

RIP Dad.


Sherril said...

That's a lovely picture of your dad. I'm sorry your Santa wasn't with you this year. I laughed when you mentioned being hot on Christmas Eve. I forget it isn't winter around the world this time of year.

Rhoto said...

What a funny and sweet story, Keely!! A beautiful picture of your Dad...
Don't even ASK about Christmas Eve/Day here... NOTHING "done" for the Holidays, far too much emotions flowing...
I O-W-E my dear Tony another one w/o the screaming, crying, laughing, giggling roller coaster ride... Didn't ANYONE tell ANYONE I H-A-T-E "amusement parks" ;) :(
Soft hugs to you,
Rhonda in Montreal (PR)

Rhoto said...

Keely, all the roller coaster of emotions for ME have been because I was/am sooo terrified that this is "our last Christmas together"... DH is 81 with lots of health conditions. HE says he has a great quality of life and "I count my BLESSINGS, Rhonda!"... I USUALLY live "in the moment" and enjoy my dear Hubby. Too much mushy expectations during the Holidays, eh...
So, I'm so sorry that you actually lost your Dad. My "loss" is in-my-head, eh...
Soft hugs sweet friend,
Please delete my two comments when you read 'em... Don't want to be a bother/burden to you at this Season, too, eh...;)

Keely said...

Rhonda, Friends aren't a bother or burden :) I think I know what you mean tho. I've spent the last few weeks being extremely clingy of my DH after Dad died and DH has no health problems to give me any worries. However, I've started relaxing and decided to just keep enjoying DH. You and Tony have such a strong relationship and it comes across in all you say. Keep enjoying your wonderful husband. Hugs right back at ya. :)

Rhoto said...

;) ;) ;)!!
Soft hugs,
Your friend Rhonda

Kat said...

Merry Christmas, Keely! I tell's very hard for me to imagine a hot Christmas LOL. As we recover from a recent snowstorm, battle an icy mix on Christmas Day, and are currently experiencing MUCH rain.

Anonymous said...

hi keely,
your dad's photo brought a lump to my throat, I work in retail and get to experience christmas from both sides, the trees go up in october, the carols start in november, and I still don't think about shopping till christmas week! but it all pales into insignificance when you work on boxing day, that's what crazy shopping really is.

loved your story,
linda in aust.