I woke up this morning a little hungover from all the festivities and decadence of the past 48 hours. Not hungover in the literal sense, but definitely feeling the effects of some seriously rich (and delicious!) foods, too many sweets, not enough sleep and knowing I had the remains of a very busy Christmas Day still requiring my attention strung all over the house. After a stiff cup of coffee (two, actually), I went room by room setting things back to order.
The living room still had stockings scattered on the hearth, with the treasures and treats ready to be claimed by their owners. Ribbons, bows and empty boxes were on the dining room table, ready to be packed away and reused for another occasion. Under the tree, in neat piles, the prized rewards of a blessed year. The refrigerator was a complete disaster; the garbage disposal never ate so well! Despite the mess, I couldn’t help but smile at the mess and count my blessings.
We scaled our Christmas back this year significantly. My husband and I exchanged very modest gifts – and only because we both broke the “no gifts” agreement we made – and knew better than to really go crazy and spend freely. We didn’t spend our usual amount on our daughter, either. We chose a few gifts she really wanted and emphasized family instead. Hard as it was, we made the decision out of necessity, practicality and the need to make clear the real reasons of giving.
I was worried that she’d feel slighted or notice the visibly “less” amount stacked under the tree. But I underestimated her. With no “Mom and Dad” gifts and less for her, we blew through the pile yesterday morning in a flash. When it was done, and we sat down for breakfast, I asked her if she had a good Christmas. Her response? “It was the best, Mom. I got just what I wanted.”
We had a relaxing morning of discovering new gifts, playing games and just relishing in time together. Just us. Our family. Blessed beyond measure.
The best gifts cannot be wrapped. They come after the giving is over – or you think it is over – and you realize the best is yet to come. They are the moments when you get back all the love and energy you pour into life in magical little unexpected moments.
Don’t be bummed that Christmas is over. If you did it right, you’ll have more gifts to unwrap and no paper to clean up!