Self-Soothing Behavior – How to Live Through the Holidays

Christmas Texas Style

Christmas Texas Style

And no, I don’t mean the naughty kind of self-soothing. Sometimes it’s necessary to dig way down deep into your bag of tricks. And sometimes you just get lucky.

Hubman’s cute little blond spitfire of a cousin sent us a Christmas present in the mail. A tiny little Cyprus tree about 10 inches tall. I smelled it and something clicked in my head.A small glimmer of “mmm, that smells good, like a real Christmas tree” hope was born.

4 Christmases

Another thing I did was drag out my favorite dysfunctional family Christmas movies. 1) National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation – with Chevy Chase and Beverly D’Angelo, 2) Four Christmases  – Vince Vaughn and Reese Witherspoon, and 3) Mixed Nuts – Steve Martin.

Also, Mister Husband managed to lure me out of the house for the first time since we got home from the road trip, except to go to the drug store for refills. He bribed me with steak, OK. I can be had for a price, but you have to aim high! We went to Texas Land and Cattle steak house.

It turned out to be funny because our poor little teen-aged waiter, sporting a Robert Pattinson of the Twilight Saga hairdo, was a bumble fuss and spilled a tray of drinks on the people in the booth behind us. In an attempt to make him feel better, I told him about the time in my younger days that I spilled a tray with a pitcher of beer and 8 full glasses down the back of a guy wearing in expensive suit. Hubman left him a $20 dollar tip to cheer him up.

Christmas vacation

Christmas vacation

So I guess Christmas cheer can be had, but sometimes you have to work at it. On the way to the restaurant Hubman and I had the annual “do you want to put up the tree this year” discussion. I decided to negotiate this time instead of going along with it without ascertaining the specifics.

I asked him “define exactly what you mean by putting up the tree please. Because in past years it meant that I climb up in the nasty, dusty attic and hand things down to you, because you’re too big for the ladder or the hole in the garage ceiling. Then I get stuck with the majority of the actual decorating to boot.” I’ve given up asking how the stuff that was already there when I moved to this house 10 years ago got up there. I guess it was elves.

In past years after I climb down out of the attic, he assembles the giant electric tree with lights already attached. Thank you, God. I hate stringing lights, because it brings up child hood memories of getting electrocuted every year when testing them. This happened because back when the dinosaurs roamed the lights had real, made of foil, tinsel stuck in them and my mother was afraid to plug them in. So she gets her kid to do it instead, go figure.

Mixed Nuts

Mixed Nuts

Anyway, after Hubman assembles the tree, by his unspoken decree he usually decides his work done, goes in his office, shuts the door, and plays computer games. Leaving me to figure out what to do with the five thousand ornaments and various decorations.

Some are of sentimental value and some are complete junk and should be discarded.  But no one remembers anymore which is which, so I can’t throw anything away unless it is obviously eaten by insects. It’s a daunting task and I immediately begin to harbor thoughts of either homicide or running away to another country, or both. I tried getting tipsy one year to do it, but it ended up a near disaster for both me and the tree. Although I did have more fun than the plastic tree did.

I’m not the seasonal decorating kind person. I would be happy with hanging a wreath on the door and placing a few cutesy pieces of Christmas deco on the fire-place mantle and call it done. So I decided to hold him too his desire to have a fully assembled and decorated tree and insist that he play fair and do his share of the tree decoration.

No coming down with the bubonic plague or developing a sudden allergy to Christmas ornaments! Also, this time I’m going to put aside all the junk that I think are candidates for disposal and enforce the “when in doubt, throw it out” clause. My version of the Santa clause.

4 responses

  1. [...] Self-Soothing Behavior – How to Live Through the Holidays (serenitygame.com) [...]

    1. thanks for sharing my post :)

  2. Funny post! Neither Willie or I have the energy to put up Christmas decorations, so it usually doesn’t happen. Being summer here (and hot & humid), it’s difficult to get into the mood.

    1. I hear you. In Texas it could hot, cold, windy, snow, hail, or have a dust storm on any day in December. And I’m not kidding. The way to make the thermometer plummet is drag the outside lights down out of the attic. The next day is guaranteed to be below freezing with gale force winds. :)

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