Last year at this time we were shuttling ourselves and the girls between our nest and our new house. We had been doing this for several months but only as of November 12 could we say “our house”. Prior to that it was “our hopeful house” as we are not ones to tempt fate and the ride to dropping the “hopeful” was anything but. I had been looking forward to the Holiday Traditions Exchange for a long time prior to this, as I was seeking any type of tethering to the real world that I could put my hands on.
School starts. Check
Rain and leaves changing color. Check
Everything else at this point had become a blur, unknown to me and very clearly uncontrolled by me or anyone else I knew. We were trying our best to hang onto what felt like a magic carpet ride, sans magic, or at least sans a good driver. The view of real life below was only sometimes clear and even then very fleeting.
November came and with it our ream of paper, signed, sealed and delivered, telling us the house was ours. Now what? Well, now we get to the real work. Cut, paste, hammer, paint, repeat. Oh, and spending money. But that goes without saying.
Through it all I am reading along in blog land~recipes, art, craft projects, home improvement ideas all saved for the day when they might be able to come alive, in a home. Our home.
So it was for the Holiday Traditions Exchange. I waited for it, and with nary a thought to the fact that all of our worldly possessions were tucked away in a storage POD far, far away, I signed up. I had participated the year before and hoped that my follow through then would propel me into the same mode again, despite our circumstances.
Suffice to say, I should not have signed up. I sent, at the very lastest of minutes, the most ridiculous felted sweater trees to a very kind and understanding family in Wisconsin and they sent me the most amazing advent calendar.
I have blogged before about what transpired there, in the days and weeks following my ill conceived attempt at Holiday Traditions and where they can lead to, despite being ill prepared and seemingly not at all worthy in the craft department. And now we are full circle. I have just returned from a week long visit with “Owl Mary Jo” and am now looking VERY much forward to our first holiday season in our home. And we have decided to spend this time together at our home, not venturing farther than the grocery store. Buying and setting up a tree. Hanging lights. What else is there to do?
I am really and truly stumped by this, as we have been shuttling ourselves to Oregon for nearly 10 years and now we’ve added Wisconsin to the list. We’ve never opened gifts at the home where we live. Never had a holiday tradition which wasn’t part of the fabric of our traveling and quite possibly created as a condition of it.
Now I am your hostess for the exchange. I am full of a mix of emotions over this. If it weren’t for the lovely and talented Meg and her lovely blog, Sew Liberated, we never would have driven down snowy cold roads to share egg nog and stories by candlelight with strangers. And this year, a similar touch of randomness has visited itself upon Meg and her family, leading her to pass me the reins for the exchange this year. Despite all of this, and also because of it, we will march forward with the joy in one hand and the spirit of health and well being in the other and share them with abandon~and a touch of random.
Before you head over there to sign up, covered in glitter and glue and string, if you would please take a moment to share with us, in the comments, a tradition that you and your family partake in~we are seeking any and all ideas! Our old holiday notes on what to pack for whom and how to fly cross country and arrive smiling with two kids in tow have been scuttled (for now) and we start anew~and with a fairly blank notebook! Please help me fill it up and then waste no time in getting over to the sign up page.
I’ll be waiting here to hear from all of you~hot cocoa in one hand and a candle for peace and good health in the other. Maybe we are on our way to some new traditions after all. Won’t you please join us?