catelin: (glasses)
( Dec. 24th, 2007 09:01 am)
Christmas Eve has always been the big part of the celebration for my family. My grandmother would make potato soup and we'd open our gifts. Santa would come in the morning to leave a few things, but we never counted on him for the big stuff...that was always family and the night before Christmas. After my grandmother died, even before I had kids, everything stopped. It became half-hearted. My mother doesn't even put up a tree anymore. My parents' lives center around their dogs and routine. I used to get so upset by this, but now I just accept it as the way they are and I don't worry about it. So here I am, in the shitty little oil field town I fled as soon as I graduated high school, in my parent's house-o-dogs, with my two boys. My brother is a guest of the state this year. No tree, no fanfare, only the bare bones of what remains of my family. And, oddly enough, that's just fine with me. I am peaceful and full of love for this strange tribe to which I belong. I am looking forward to soup and presents with the few of us as much as I ever did when we were a boisterous houseful. Because it's the intention that matters. Not theirs, but mine. So I come to the table tonight, blessed with all of the good things that I have in my life, and with the wonderful people I love and who love me in my heart. I am whole and content to be who I am, to be with the people who raised me, and with the two little guys I am sending out into the world one day. The heartstring of family, for all its fragile and delicate nature, has a strength to it that defies logic. That's where the magic lies, and I wish all of you a magical logic-defying holiday with the ones you love.
28 degrees today, coldest day of the year so far. I'm driving west to meet my dad halfway for the boys' annual winter break visit. I'll drop them off with him and pick them up in a week from my mom. It's always strange to spend extended time without them, but it's worth it for the time they get to spend with their grandparents. I haven't had much of a break over the last week or so, as things have been crazy trying to get ready for the new job. It's worth it, so I don't mind at all. I've missed a lot during my hiatus and I've got tons of comments to catch up on and apologies to make to many of you for being so out of touch. I can't even really bring myself to write about what went on with me the last year or so, but at least I'm finding my words again. A new year is just around the corner. I'm ready!

Other random things that I just want to note...James Carvel is starting to scare the shit out of me with his extruded voice and that face! He is starting to look like the creepy Madame puppet that I hated when I was a kid (although Madame was much funnier and probably smarter). Potato soup is just about one of the best meals in the universe. I've stopped painting my toenails, out of laziness, and noticed that I have those weird old lady ridges on my nails...slight, but still there! Ricky Bobby. Ha! And ha!!! If I didn't know people exactly like that I'm sure it wouldn't have been so funny, but I have spent the last week telling everyone how I'm "a gonna come at 'em like a spider monkey" and I still laugh my ass off at myself every time I say it. I just came into possession of a 1964 Dodge Polara, aka The Money Pit. It's a sparkly pretty blue (not original) and needs some interior work, but it runs and will be a cool car for just goofing around in once the weather is warmer. It's neat to have a car that's the same year model as I am. We both seem to have held up surprisingly well.

Off to the great I-10 for a few hours. Happy holidaze to you all!!!!!
catelin: (kiss)
( Dec. 25th, 2005 11:05 am)
The 25th is usually quiet for me. Christmas Eve was always my family's big night, before my grandmother died and took everyone's already slight sense of holiday obligation with her. We still have our small traditions, even with my little family of three. Potato soup, talking about what we are grateful for, opening presents...we always opened our gifts on Christmas Eve instead of Christmas morning and I have no idea why. We never had lots of gifts, something I am glad of as I see how the season has become such an awful excuse for bloated toad-like consumerism. I pity the several friends I have whose holidays consist of careful calculations of amounts spent so as to be "enough" for someone. The politics of the Christmas gift is something that amazes me. I am grateful that my family never indulged that particular holiday notion.

My children put a lot of thought into their small gifts--a candle with three scents in one from my youngest, a book of recipes and a handwritten story from my older one. My gift to them this year was a small aquarium for their room. Not that they don't get the full-on spoiled experience from their dad. He's the provider of all the Playstations, GameBoys, and the like. Still, it made me feel good to see both of the kids setting the techie toys aside and intently reading their fish-tending books, earnestly conversing every few minutes about what fish they should choose and why.

The boys spend today with their dad, giving me a quiet house until tomorrow morning. It used to make me sad, spending Christmas alone. Now I look forward to it and enjoy the chance to lounge around in my PJs all day. I putter around the house between napping, eating, and reading. There's plenty of Three Stooges to enjoy on cable. And, of course, there's my perennial holiday favorite: the Law & Order marathon (which probably amounts to only one or two extra episodes, since it's on practically 24-hours-a-day anyhow...but still, it's the thought that counts!).

Tomorrow we head to my folks' house where my holiday fare will probably consist of tamales, hummus, gorgonzola ravioli, baba ganoush, green chile soup and homemade cherry pie. It used to drive me nuts that we had no traditional holiday food stuffs like my friends. My grandmother used to hold the line when it came to turkey; but other than that, there was no telling what we'd end up eating on the holiday. Anything went--and it still does. Now I appreciate the crazy-quilt approach to celebrating. It's only fitting, after all; our extended family is an odd spiritual mix of atheist, agnostic, pagan, Christian, and Jew. Our holidays are akin to blowing confetti out of a cannon. It's a big mess, but it's our mess and I wouldn't trade it for anything.

So here's to all of us and our big messy beautiful lives! Love and peace and namaste to you all!


catelin: (Default)


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