I was scheduled to work today, but after a few very brief tasks this morning, it seems that there is nothing else required of me today, and so I find myself with an unexpected day off.... on Christmas Eve!
The past four weeks my schedule has been fairly non-stop, unpredictable and a bit chaotic, and I have frequently lamented the lack of "down time". Ironically, I now find myself with a free day, and I don't know what to do with my time. My mind and body have adjusted to survival mode so well that it is going to take me a while to unwind, breathe deeply, and make friends with myself once again - to remember that I am a quiet, simple-pleasures kind of girl.
A bit of holly for the holiday
Just an awesome window I happened upon
I wonder, apart from the spiritual aspects of the holiday, how do I celebrate Christmas when I have none of the usual things or people to celebrate with? Don't worry, I won't be alone for Christmas, and I'm not sad, just taking some time to reflect on what makes Christmas for me..... I've been listening to Christmas music for a few weeks now (thanks Rob for the awesome folksy Christmas playlists). I've put up Christmas decorations all around the château, baked Christmas cupcakes, experienced the Christmas market on the Champs Elysees, had a wonderful Christmas lunch with my coworkers, and yet it still doesn't feel like Christmas. You see, my list of things have all been done for other people, not things I've chosen to do (other than the Christmas music), but things that have been required of me. This doesn't make them bad - in fact - I've enjoyed all of it, but it hasn't filled my Christmas tank. But that's about to change! This afternoon I am planning to spend some time in the kitchen (by myself) making some Christmas cookies, and then I am going to spend the evening with a new friend and her family. There will be a gift exchange, good food and drinks, and plenty of laughter, which will make for a delightful evening. Tomorrow I am looking forward to some more alone time in the kitchen baking a pie, and being with some more new friends. I'm reminded once again, it's the simple things for me - baking and friends, being still, breathing deeply (laughter is always good for this), and being present in the moment.