Skip to main content

Christmas Stockings


     In case you haven’t noticed, Christmas is coming. All the winter holidays are coming, and we can’t even escape.     Usually by this time I've made a trip to Walmart, off the island of course, and purchased plenty of wrapping paper, tape, pajama pants, toothbrushes, and Hershey Kisses to stuff at least ten stockings.     
     This year, we opted to spend our reserves going to Maine in October, a decision I thought we might regret come December. But I don’t really regret it. My children are what I would call “grown-assed kids” now, and I don’t worry about the stuff under the tree as much. Unfortunately for them.     
     I still love Christmas though. It’s not even about presents, although my grown-assed children still gather under the tree Christmas morning. (And I will do everything within my power to see to it that they continue to do this until they reach the age of 72.)     
     There’s just something about it all. The togetherness. The quantity of dip I prepare. The ham. The leftover ham. The red, green, and silver Kisses. The days off from work. The arrival of the grown-assed kids who don’t currently live with me. In the best sense of an oft-used phrase — it really is “all good.”         
     One of the first Christmases I spent with my “new” husband, Chris, he thought it was a good idea to buy me socks for Christmas. We had made that vow that all married couples make: “Don’t get me anything for Christmas. We bought a dishwasher this year,” or some such nonsense. So, Christmas Eve came, the day I let the grown-assed kids open one gift from me and the gifts to each other. All the kids were looking at me as I opened the squishy package from Chris. They knew we were still newly-sort-of-weds and they were curious. I opened a beautifully wrapped pair of black socks. And then I didn’t open any more packages from Chris. Because that was the only one. 
    Somehow he had taken that vow of “Don’t get me anything for Christmas. We bought a dishwasher this year” seriously. All wives know this promise is only made in jest. None of us mean it. Really. We say this and at the same time we’d really like a fine piece of jewelry, preferably one made of at least 14K gold, or in a pinch, white gold. And the fact that husbands don’t understand this leaves us shaking our heads.     
     Just now I watched as my husband emptied the entire refrigerator and wiped down the whole thing. Before this, he asked if I wanted him to cook something for supper. And before that he drove me to work and as I left the car, he asked me if I needed him to bring me some iced tea or coffee anything else I might need.     
     I know from now on any socks I unwrap at Christmas will come with a sweet necklace and an apology. And this is why I love the season. This and, as you know, there’s Jesus and Mary and Joseph, this time I say it without  blasphemy. Merry Christmas to all of you…and especially those who get socks under the tree or those who don’t even have a tree.

Comments

Deb said…
Merry Christmas, Connie. :)

Popular posts from this blog

I might need a price check

So my husband Chris works three days a week in America, and I’m trying not to take this personally.
He’s commuting Monday mornings on the 6:30 ferry over to Cape Cod, where he works at an upholstery shop in Hyannis, the Mattydale of Cape Cod, for all you Syracuse readers. I stay here and hold down the fort, cooking up a cocktail of frozen pizzas and mac n’ cheese weeknights for my poor Danny. Chris comes back late Thursday night, all giddy over toilet paper prices and quotes on cheaper rent.
No, no, no, and more no I say. I can’t possibly leave all this off-season quiet and high-priced laundry detergent. There’s no convincing me to leave no matter how many times Chris points out that there’s a Trader Joe’s “over there.”
I want to stay here until I miraculously win on one of those $5 scratchers and can buy my own house here. The difference being that I feel confident that I will someday scratch my way to freedom while Chris thinks we’d be smarter to look into a nice rental “over there.…

Library lady

So today a co-worker who is — let’s just be honest here — 70 years old, gave me a serious run for my money at the library. Some guy was looking for a specific movie, which just happened to be located on the very bottom shelf, and I did one of those pretend searches for it on the middle shelf. She walks over and squats down like she’s going to give birth in some Third World country and finds it in two seconds. Again, here we are. Now I’m at home tearing open the cardboard box of a frozen pizza and she’s obviously at home on a rubber mat touching her big toe to her nose.      I regularly call the doctor to renew my prescription for muscle relaxers, while it seems like the rest of the women on this ridiculously fit island drink hot tea and take a warm bath for their yoga-stressed muscles. Thank God my teeth are relatively good.
     It’s not easy to work with women your age and older who think nothing of drinking spinach shakes and lugging all kinds of crap around. If I tried half the…

Getting well takes baby steps

So I’ve had what you could call a case of the pneumonia. It was not pleasant. And to top it off it happened in San Antonio, Texas. Like I wasn’t sweating before the fever.
I was there to see my niece Michelle, who by the way kept asking me, “Are you going to write about this?” which is funny because she’s a writer too. I naturally said, “Oh no, of course not.” And here we are.
Thinking back, the best part of that trip teeters between meeting my two great-nephews, Oliver and Isaac, and having a couple of beers with their Yaya, my sister, who I haven’t had beers with in decades. Like I said, it’s a toss-up. There’s also the fact that I got to spend time with my niece’s husband Alex. He’s a hardcore military guy. He teaches other military guys how to be military policemen. I’m not going to gamble on writing anything about him. He’s from Wisconsin though, which I like. And he likes to cook, which I also like.
I thought to myself before I ever left my nice cocoon of Martha’s Vineyard to tra…