The Holiday Season Is Over, And I’m Very Bored


OK, that’s over. Another holiday season come and gone.

It’s my own fault, really, for spending half a year on it. In late August, I start decorating my stores for Halloween. In September, I buy the Halloween candy. In October, I carve the pumpkin, decorate the house and go trick-or-treating. (With the kids, for heaven’s sake, although I’ve recently discovered there really is no age limit.)

In November, it’s all about cooking for Thanksgiving and, once that’s over, Black Friday shopping. The shopping serves as the big prelude to Christmas, a holiday which now eats up more calendar time than Joseph did, trying to get Mary to Bethlehem on the back of that slow-moving donkey.

There’s a week’s break in order for us all to get the glitter out of our carpets, then New Year’s Eve pops up, together with all its deceivingly festive confetti. You’d think New Year’s would wrap things up, but I have a daughter whose birthday is Jan. 3 (my fault, not hers, she is quick to point out), so the holidays really don’t reach a conclusion until Jan. 4.

But now — finally — we can get back to normal.

It’s great to look around my house and realize that I have picked up 48 square feet of space in the living room by getting that enormous dead tree out of there. I’ve pulled the nails out of the mantel and temporarily (until next year) patched the holes with white toothpaste. My cupboards are stacked high with gift boxes full of chocolate, but I’m not worried about that — it won’t last long. And all the other presents have been distributed to their proper locations — new clothes in the closet, new hardware in the garage, new kitchenware in the pantry, new books stacked next to the bed. I’ve even started bringing in the outdoor decorations and taking down the lights.

So now, I am sitting in my dining room, typing at a table that was (until recently) covered with a red and green tablecloth. Now it’s just bare. The room is quiet. The kids are back at school (well, what serves as school right now). I look out my window, and it’s just a street. There aren’t even any cars going by, much less cars with fir trees tied on top.

It’s calm.

It’s restive.

It’s boring.

Where are the carols? Where are the cards? Where are the hysterical grandchildren? Is this my new normal?

This stinks.

But, OK. Let’s accentuate the positive. Let’s turn our frowns upside-down. Let’s do what it takes to get that glass half-full again.

Let’s think. OK, just a few short weeks from now, after all the bills have been paid, I can start to keep my money again. I can get back on my diet. I can start walking around the block. I can put the alcohol away. I can take the alcohol out again. My life will be completely back on track.

Just in time for Valentine’s Day… thank goodness.