January 3, 2011

What I Did On My Winter Vacation

Here I am back at work.

Here I am, staring at my work computer and the email piling up. It's a little depressing, to be honest. I mean, I haven't worked since December 22nd and in the intervening days I've been with my family right about now, eating breakfast, sipping coffee, watching Toy Story or Monsters Inc., or Barbie Diamond Magic Dancing Three Musketeers Princess Castle. But I don't get paid to do that (though someone really should pay me for sitting through those damn Barbie movies which are phenomenally bad).

But what did I do during the break? The better question is what didn't I do?

  • Attended an awesome Christmas carol-singing party (thanks Kimberly!)
  • Wrapped presents and watched them get unwrapped
  • Played several rounds of Lego Star Wars on the Wii
  • Read a few books
  • Bought a few books
  • Went ice skating, fell on my ass, realized I hate ice skating with a passion
  • Watched a few movies
  • Digitized most of my DVD collection
  • Watched most of the third season of the Doctor Who reboot and realized it was pretty much the greatest thing on TV right now
  • Visited Monkeytown; got evacuated from Monkeytown due to a plane in restricted airspace
  • Worked (a little of the time); ignored work (most of the time)
  • Made cheese fondue; ate it
  • Rocked out with a new three-piece band two members of which are under age six. I'm calling us The Reluctant Sleepers since I also spent quite a few sleepless nights with each of the kids for various reasons.
  • Culled my book collection donating half the books we own to charity
  • Ate lots of chocolate
  • Drank beer
  • Put on weight
  • Dreaded the return to work
  • Declared email bankruptcy (in other words, marked everything as read and started fresh in the new year)

I think every time you take a break from your normal routine, it's potentially life-changing. At least it is for me. I always come away from it with something profound - a desire to avoid sweating the infamous small stuff or worry about the things that are truly worth worrying about. Unfortunately it's hard not to backslide. But I do know this - my family is awesome and despite the fact that I often got grumpy only because I was out of my element since the day-to-day yielding to kid demands isn't my normal domain I love them and adore them and treasure them and look forward to comparing this Christmas to the next. And the next after that. And the next. There is no way you can avoid getting infected by the spirit of the holidays when you've got kids. At least kids like mine. There was a magic to this Christmas that I hadn't felt since I was, myself, a kid. Its my favorite time of the year and this year was no exception.

It's understandable, then, why I'm ever so slightly exhausted. But like 2010 itself, I'm a little mystified by the fact that the holidays just upped and disappeared on me so quickly. They were awesome. But way too short.

And what were the highlights of your holidays?

Posted by Chris at January 3, 2011 8:05 AM

I've been off since the 22nd too and boy did it hurt coming to work this morning!

We started off our crazy holidays during Thanksgiving by deciding to paint teh living room, which turned into ordering new carpet because the fresh paint made the old carpet look really nasty, which turned into also buying new furniture because well, the new carpet made the old furniture look drab and run down and then topped it off with new flat screen tv because the new paint, carpet and furniture hated to old tv and killed it.

Who does this the week before Christmas? So we mostly sat on our collective asses and enjoyed our new living room.

In that process I also culled our book collection and donated half to a book drive for a local library and half to a book drive at my work.

Looking at the calendar for the month, and damn, isn't January a long assed month?

Posted by: Lisa at January 3, 2011 8:11 AM

The best part of the holiday was my nephew announcing his engagement to the nicest woman ever. I am so happy for them and look forward with great happiness to their wedding.
Gift-wise, the 47 inch flat screen super TV wasn't bad!

Posted by: Maribeth at January 3, 2011 8:22 AM

We played a lot of board games (mostly kid games) and I got thoroughly whupped by my pint-sized competitors :) I watched Elliot play Donkey Kong on the Wii and rock out on his Paper Jamz guitar (have you seen those things? Pretty cool for a $20 "guitar"). I watched Charlotte play dress up and color her huge cardboard play castle. I ate everything in sight, including gingerbread cookies for breakfast 3 days in a row, and came out the other side of vacation weighing exactly what I weighed going in (can I get a hallelujah, it's a Christmas miracle!!). I was lazy and it felt wonderful :)

Glad you had a good time too.

Posted by: Elizabeth at January 3, 2011 8:50 AM

Back to work on Wednesday for me, we have two public holidays here in Scotland. Sounds like you had a great festive season, I ate lots of chocolate too. Highlights for me were seeing my mum the week before christmas, playing Trivial Pursuit, hearing my 15 year old brother play a piece on his violin that he composed himself - outstanding and going to my dad's beach bonfire yesterday.

Posted by: Katherine at January 3, 2011 8:57 AM

Getting engaged just prior to the holidays made the holidays awesome and full of love. It was really the best holiday season since my childhood - maybe even better.

Posted by: Heather at January 3, 2011 9:36 AM

I love Doctor Who! You are in the middle of what I think is my favorite of the new doctors. It changes when you get to season 5, and I wasn't sure I was a fan of it, but the new guy's growing on me. I'm just sad that now that we've finished season 5 and watched this year's Christmas special, we actually have to wait for new episodes now. Boooo.

Posted by: Dawn at January 3, 2011 9:52 AM

YAY! Mini vacations are awesome :D

Posted by: Eliz at January 3, 2011 3:27 PM

OMG the barbie movies- they are awful aren't they. We now have three of them plus a netflix rental.

I usually send Daya in her room with her portable DVD player so I don't have to hear them. in fact, I just ordered her a pink princess castle play tent off Amazon so she can Barbie DVD party all by herself (without me!!) in style.

Glad the holidays were great. :)

Posted by: jessica at January 3, 2011 4:40 PM

Christmas Morning hearing my 5 year old at 5:30 in the morning saying she was going to throw up. My husband declared me faster than a speeding bullet as he only saw a blur of me sprint to the bathroom to grab the trashcan and sprint back to the top bunk before blankets or pajamas could be damaged in the line of fire. We had the flu bug at our house:( It was still a great time with family and friends, making goodies for everyone, searching for the gingerbread man that ran away, and watching the kids scream in excitement over new toys that will surely find their way to the closets and be forgotten about within a few months. I loved every moment of it minus the never ending tummy virus that hung out with us for a few weeks~Happy New Year!

Posted by: Shannon at January 3, 2011 11:26 PM

Monkeytown? Tell me more!

Posted by: NG at January 4, 2011 7:38 AM

Dr. Who is the best - particularly David Tennant!

Posted by: JSEE at January 4, 2011 3:11 PM

Definitely sounds like your holiday was on the busy side! Those Barbie movies are truly heinous. I'm very grateful to have only ever seen one :P

Posted by: Heather at January 4, 2011 5:04 PM

How much weight did we (all) put on collectively? Yum! So much fun in the doing :-)

We skied and I worked my way up to the 'intermediate' slopes! Fun!

Posted by: Karen at January 11, 2011 9:56 PM