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It’s almost here…

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Caution this post comes with an emotional disclaimer… consider yourself forewarned.

When I initially sat down to write this post, I was giddy and ready for Christmas, but undergoing some of my own seasonal stress in the back of my mind. I had a mild meltdown trying to think of presents for everyone and find time to write cards (hint… I used TinyPrints this year – not only was it was so much fun to customize the card, it made life SO much easier). As usual, before I get into enjoying the season, I freak out because I want every single detail from the centerpiece to the wrapping paper to be perfect. I spent a weekend ceremoniously putting up my tree (with eggnog in hand per family tradition) and putting out little seasonal touches. My apartment is filled with candles that mimic that pine tree smell we all love since we’re not allowed to have a real tree. Did not see that on the condo association rules when we bought the place. It seriously could have been a deal breaker if I had.

The other thing I absolutely love about Christmas is that every family has their own way of doing it. Even if that means ordering Chinese food… it’s consistency of these traditions that totally gets me. It’s the time of year that I can really ethnically themed with my decorating. All my wooden Polish folk art ornaments are pulled out. They are probably every color except for red and green. Of course, while I’m putting them I have to have a traditional polskie kolędy playlist rocking out.

However… here comes the emotional part…

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After Friday’s events,  I felt the need to look back at what I had written. It was such a surreal feeling to walk around my own community in Connecticut and to think about the fact that as I joked with my coworkers over my morning latté something mind numbingly awful was happening 45 minutes away from my desk. After strolling to pick up wine, surrounded by deafening silence in a city center that is normally full of life and Friday night noise, I decided that I needed to drop the stress act and get into the Christmas spirit ASAP.

It was officially time to sit back and appreciate the fruits of my labor. To appreciate that I had a wonderful family to celebrate the season with. To know that everyone was safe.

While this holiday season for some of us has been completely turned upside down, I hope that in time my neighbors can remember the beauty of it. Remember how wonderful it is to think about all the little details and have their stress return to the minutia of having enough time to write cards. Until then they will be in my thoughts as my sister and I snuggle in front of the fire and sing along with Ella Fitzgerald for the millionth time.

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