<p>Warm thoughts to all of those who are having a difficult time this year. We lost my beloved SIL in March, so this will be the first year we can’t talk with her over the holidays and plan a visit to see her. She played a pretty big role in our lives, even though she lived 2500 miles away. </p>

<p>Usually, I let my kids do whatever decorating they’re game for and that’s it. Have to start cleaning the house, they’ll be home before I know it! A friend who lost her husband on Valentine’s Day this year convinced me to buy a great-smelling liquid soap that we’ve put in the kitchen that’s called “Winter Scents” or something from Williams Sonoma. It smells like cedar, pine, and cinamon, so that might be a mood lifter as well.</p>

<p>I think each of us has to figure out what works and not be pressured to do any more than that. I find buying gifts for the senior Angel Tree at the mall also made me smile.</p>

<p>Not sure what more I plan to do, but there are many more weeks to figure it out. D will arrive in a little over a week–can hardly wait!</p>

<p>^ all
Thanks again, all respondents. I will be OK, am just focusing on planning my brother’s memorial service now. Simply need to focus on one day, and one agenda, at a time, and holiday stuff is simply not making it to the top of the list. Figure no point in forcing it. </p>

<p>Both my kids have significant others who will be central to the holidays for them, for which I am glad. As a matter of fact, D is engaged, so in 2013 we will be planning her wedding. I just need to make it to the new year.</p>

<p>JEM–trite, but life goes on. Seems like you have your priorities straight. Peace to you and your brother.</p>

<p>I like the holidays, but just this week I remembered that there’s a lot about them that’s just. . . work. Errands, decisions, chores, shopping, the !@#$@$ Christmas letter, . . . . Really a lot of stuff that is not fun. At some point each year it becomes a time to just get through for me. Just as I always preferred the day after Thanksgiving to the day itself (I was just so dang tired when the time came to sit down to eat), I think my time is more the lazy time between Christmas and New Year’s. I’ll be off of work. And for the first time ever my family will not be together. One kid is taking a trip with his gf. The other kids and DH are going on a ski trip. It’s going to be just me and the dogs. Which in its own way might be kind of wonderful if you think about it.</p>

<p>Anyway–tree is up (although ornament boxes not put away), shopping is mostly done (although not all mailed), letter is drafted (although still needs a lot of work). And December 26th will be here before I know it. ;)</p>

<p>So I managed a small, simple tree. Pulled out a red candle, found the Christmas CD and thats it! I’m going to a Christmas concert at Church on Sunday- and then my daughter gets home… maybe that will help me focus on the reason for the season…</p>

<p>Holiday wishes from the Scrooge…</p>

<p>:) …</p>