And here I go, on a cleaning frenzy, as I ready the house for the coming holidays. But first things first. My daughter, who is studying at UT Knoxville, will return this weekend for a few days to enjoy her birthday weekend sans work, students, books and the demands of graduate school. With each passing year of her education we see less of her as one would expect due to the increase in responsibilities of her program. Thus, I want to squeeze out every precious moment of her short stay with us. Floors are swept and vacuumed, fresh flowers on her dresser, favorite meal ingredients in the fridge for birthday dinner, house newly painted…yes, house IS newly painted but a TOTAL coincidence I promise! I think everything will be ready for our 72 hour visit.
And of course despite even my best designed plans, my cerebral version of her three-day visit, I will not get everything ‘done’ before she arrives and we’ll never get in all that I’d like to do while she’s in town. Same goes for holiday time around the table or tree, these life memories most certainly never end up exactly as envisioned. One thing I’ve learned with age is this: Life doesn’t have to be perfect to be wonderful.
What I have come to realize is yes, I truly enjoy making my house cozy and welcoming for friends and family who visit. In recent years, however, I’ve managed to downplay much of the scattered anticipation leading up to that time by focusing on what is most important-the people, not the prep! I am making more time for me to be involved in the visit and not simply be the ringleader of the event…it truly is wonderful to sit and enjoy a meal and conversation with everyone versus mentally managing every aspect of a too planned out evening. Now that my children are older they, too, enjoy cooking so the work is sometimes shared. In their presence, along with a glass of wine, my holiday spirit lifts exponentially!
Most likely, despite all the legwork we all do in preparation for welcoming our family and friends, much of it goes unnoticed by everyone except for those of us doing the sprinting. This season I plan on taking a breather on the front side of my holiday planning and will focus on who is coming to visit instead of worrying about the perfect setting. This will come naturally when the good food is blessed, the laughter rattles the windows and all that I love so dearly is staring back at me.
The last song I heard was Foo Fighter’s Something From Nothing...
My response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Can’t Drive 55.”