The Chaos of Christmas

I love me some Christmas, and I love a well-decorated house, but so help me if getting that house to “well-decorated” status isn’t pretty much impossible some years. This year seems especially bad, with Denisa teaching all her classes and all of our stuff from our Thanksgiving trip scattered throughout the house.

We’ve gotten all of the decorations out of the basement, at least. Does that count? Can we just stick a few ribbons on the boxes and call it good?

Something tells me the kids wouldn’t be okay with that.

I suppose a lot of this is something we brought on ourselves. The decorations have a tendency to snowball year after year, as we keep picking up more. And more. And more. We already were pretty much full up, and then we picked up a slew over in Germany two years ago. So when I’m elbow-deep in Christmas decorations, trying to frantically get the presents ordered and the food figured out and help Denisa grade tests and lesson plan . . . I think it only natural to take a step back and ask myself why in the world I’m doing all of this?

Why bother with all of it?

That was me last night. And the answer was pretty obvious: I do it all because I want my kids to have the fun sort of Christmas I had growing up. The crazy thing is that I’m not even certain what sort of Christmas I actually *had* growing up. I know what my memories of it are like, and it’s those memories that I’m trying to capture and pin down and make sure I pass on. The trouble with memories is they tend to age very well. They get better over time–or at least mine do, it seems. Nostalgia adds a whole bunch of extra awesome to Christmases of yore, and it’s really hard to compete with that sort of thing. (One of the reasons Indiana Jones IV and the Star Wars prequels flopped, I believe.)

But I’d be lying if I said it was just so my kids could have the sort of Christmas I had, because I’m also always on the hunt to have the sort of Christmas we had a year ago, or two years, or three. We’ve had a lot of fun at Christmas, Denisa, me and the kids. And I don’t want to miss one of those in the future.

I don’t know. This post isn’t really coming together like I was hoping it would. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. My point is that the chaos of Christmas is worth it. It’s like this every year, and every year I’ve forgotten all about how chaotic it was as soon as the last decoration is hung and the house is more or less back to order. A bit of upset and disorder is a small price to pay for the fun memories I’ve accumulated over the years.

Even if it doesn’t feel like that at the beginning of December.

Which is just a long way of me saying that I really have to stop blogging now and go clean some dishes.

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