Just poured myself a glass of egg nog in celebration of being so close to finishing my first ever Christmas tree skirt on my brand new, gloriously wonderful, easy-peasy Christmas gift sewing machine! Oh... sewing machine, you deserve a name: Claire. I am an amateur sewer. I probably fall somewhere between Doesn't Know Jack and Thinks She May Have Just Figured Out How to Thread the Machine. I borrowed a friends' machine over the summer (thank you Fenja!) and then my mom gave me her old machine but I couldn't figure out how to thread it at all. I got a few projects done with the first (lots and lots of bunting, a few pairs of baby pants, and a stuffed animal or two), but I knew while that machine was perfect as a loaner, if it came to buying my own I'd want something more substantial. I added it to my Christmas wishlist, at the very most expecting that I'd be given a little something to start the saving up for the perfect machine. Then came Christmas morning when I unwrapped the paper and tears came to my eyes. There it was, in all its glory, with my name on the tag: my dream machine. I hugged it. My mom took a picture. "Thank you! Thank you!" I said, smiling at her and hugging the box some more. I smiled at Birch. I smiled at everyone.
Christmas gets a bad image sometimes. The commercialism involved is rampant and the sheer volume of stressed out, self-obsessed shoppers is enough to swear off the entire holiday forever, but in the Fox family, Christmas is a very special time when you get to show someone you love how much you respect them and who they are with a present that is right up their alley. We love presents. It's silly, I almost feel like I have to explain how we aren't horrible people for liking presents. I'll stop myself and just say this: We love presents. We love giving presents. We love finding the perfect thing be it small or large, wrapping it up, and watching our loved one's face as they open it up and exclaim, "Oh, thank you! It's perfect!" With six kids in the family, all of whom are married and almost all with kids, we've figured out a way to make it budget-friendly for everybody. Christmas isn't about stuff. It isn't about presents. To me, it's about the love we share for each other and one very seasonally-appropriate and outwardly way of showing our deep love is by giving presents that say, "I love you. I listen to you. I respect you. I love who you are and who you want to be. I want you to have this because I love the person that you are."
I received many wonderful presents this year: a sewing machine, a new diaper bag, a lovely throw and pillows that match our living room (very impressive), and a few kitcheny things to help the great style redo that I hope to accomplish this year. Birch got a new iPod (we haven't had one since 2008), a Fairtex gym membership, a vintage paella pan, and uh... a little something that could come off easily.
So, merry belated holidays! Hope you were with loved ones, ate well, drank well, and were merry. Now to have a stellar New Year's and an even better year next year! Although, I really can't see how Keats can become any better though I know he will.
Off to slap some bias tape on the edges of that tree skirt, finish up my nog, and call it a night!