Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Day After Christmas Ponderings

Just chillin' the day after Christmas, listening to a Mariachi Pandora station blare from my nephew's phone, and a fire crackling in the fireplace.  After watching the boys open their presents yesterday morning, I spent the bulk of the day in the kitchen.  Biscuits and gravy for breakfast, caramel corn for snack, turkey, sweet potatoes, and apple pie for dinner (My in-laws brought the rest).  As I was enjoying the solitude of the kitchen while remote control helicopters and Nerf sword fights swirled about, I wondered (for the millionth time) if I should be more "engaged" in the robust activity of my boys.  More and more, their activities stray from my interests and abilities. 

After pondering this throughout the day, I came to the conclusion that my biggest role now, and in the foreseeable future, is to be a positive force in the kitchen.  To be available to listen, welcome, love, and "light up" when my boys enter the room.  Unfortunately, food and its preparation are of the utmost importance to my family, and yet, one of the things I am worst at. 

I hate this irony, but have yet to figure out how to get around it.  I have a friend who is a personal chef and have proposed washing her dishes, just to be in her kitchen and glean some little nugget here and there.  We'll see what comes of that...  Meanwhile, I'll keep trying, and baking, as I can't seem to go wrong when sugar is one of the ingredients.

On a separate note, this Christmas has been one of the best for me.  After my brief self-centeredness episode (as detailed in the Stuff of Life post), this is my first year to feel totally detached from material things come Christmas Day.  There was nothing I wanted, nor expected.  The adults in the family previously agreed that we would buy for kids only this year.   I wasn't expecting to be, but I'm a big fan.  The end result was less pressure, less stuff, more money, and a palpable peace.

To be honest, I don't think I could have imagined being so happy receiving nothing before this year.  One of my continual goals is to detach from all things, and this year, God granted me the best gift of all - the joy and peace of detachment.  I am not going to guess at how long it will stay or presume that I am officially "detached", and can move on to other spiritual pursuits, but I am extremely thankful to have experienced it for at least a couple of days. 

If I needed another reminder that things don't bring lasting happiness, all I had to do was watch one of my sons unwrap all of his presents (a real gun and a telescope in the mix) and stand in the middle of the living room, looking a little sad.  When I asked him what was wrong, he said "I just didn't get to unwrap very many presents this year."  Ugh.  Maybe he would like to try the "Get nothing for Christmas" experiment next year. :)

New Year's Day is around the corner, which always leads me into a review of my life and looking for areas to renew or replace.  I'm sure I'll be writing again soon...

Merry Christmas to You!

Dear Heavenly Father, Thank you for Baby Jesus!!  Thank you for sending us a Baby to adore and love.  Thank you for salvation, Jesus in the Eucharist, time with family, fires in fireplaces, warm houses on cold nights, and grandmas two doors down.  Thank you for grace and peace.  Please teach me how to give my children good things without encouraging them to expect lasting happiness from them. Help me teach them that true happiness and peace come from You and You only. Please help us find You in each moment.  Help us recognize "the point of intersection of the timeless with Time."  Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy.  Amen.

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