Home Stretch

I can’t really wrap my head around the fact that I still have school this week. I don’t think we’ve ever gone until the 22nd in all my 13 years of teaching. It is really not going to leave much time to get ready for actual Christmas day. When am I going to wrap presents?!

I also almost forgot that last Friday was the last chance to get the kids’ teachers something. I hadn’t thought about teacher presents at all until Wednesday at 3pm, at which point I panicked. Total brain fart. I pulled a few things together, but didn’t get the aftercare staff their presents. Oops! It will be Happy New Year cards for them!

I’m finally done buying Christmas presents. In the end I think I did a decent job of keeping the number of presents reasonable. My parents bought (and still do in my opinion) such an excessive amount of stuff for us at the holidays that my perception of what is reasonable is seriously warped. But this year I didn’t have many ideas for my kids so I was better able to practice constraint. Also, I let both sets of grandparents get them some of the things I thought my kids would like, which kept the number of things I actually bought down.

I was super late getting the calendars done this year. They are supposed to arrive by the 24th but I’m prepared to make “they are coming” notes for the grandparents to unwrap. I just couldn’t motivate to make them this year; there were some impressive procrastinating tactics coming into play. I’m so relieved they are finally finished and ordered.

Definitely not doing holiday cards this year, and you know what? I’m totally okay with that. I really am. Maybe next year.

Thursday night was the craft fair at my daughter’s school. My craft was calm down bottles (with water, glitter and glue) and they were a big hit. Unfortunately there was crazy traffic (have you ever been stuck in traffic so bad that the google maps line is not red but a deep crimson, like some kind of harbinger trail of doom?!) and I didn’t have much time to set up so the whole hour was complete and utter chaos. I was so exhausted by the end of it. One more holiday task completed! I had been peeling labels off Voss bottles for a week now. So glad I’m done with that.

We made a gingerbread house (daughter) and train (son) this weekend. It was more fun than I thought it would be. Maybe gingerbread houses will be a Christmas tradition moving forward.

A definite tradition for us is the Zoo Lights. We go every year. The kids and I went on Sunday night. It was 44* (very cold for SF), but we had a great time. They really do the place up, and they put flood lights on the playground, where the kids have a great time. After three house I was so ready to go home, but I think my kids would have stayed for another hour. Definitely going to keep that Christmas tradition.

Saturday morning my husband broke our son’s bed. I could not be repaired. I was a little excited because I’d been thinking of getting my son a bunk bed for a while now, but couldn’t justify getting one when we had a perfectly good bed for him already. Saturday night I was driving a (massive) ZipVan to IKEA, where I bought a bunk bed and second mattress, along with a new chest of drawers for our daughter (hers was on its last legs and desperately needed to be replaced). I spent hours Saturday night and Sunday morning assembling furniture, and now both kids are sleeping in my son’s room in his new bed and my daughter’s room has been rearranged to accommodate the new chest of drawers and toy box. I’ve very pleased with the final results, and I hope I don’t have to build another piece of furniture for a long while.

My kids have off this week but I don’t. I’m taking Monday to be with them. We’re spending the night with my parents, who will be staying with them Tuesday. Wednesday my in-laws will take them and then Thursday my husband is taking off. My district is off Friday and I’ll be with them then. It’s frustrating when our breaks don’t overlap (That was one of the reasons I wanted to be a teacher! So I’d have breaks off with my kids!), but I know I’ll appreciate the days to get things done in early January.

I can’t believe Christmas is less than a week away. That blows my mind. I’m tentatively hopeful that this year will be a good one for us. We shall see.


  1. I didn’t do cards this year either and am way more ok with it than I thought I would be. In the past they have been so important to me- but I just can’t justify the expense this year. My MOPS group did those calm down bottles- I made one for G and he loves it. Such a great idea. I hope this week at work passes quickly for you and without too much stress. Merry Christmas friend.

  2. Have granddaughter in elementary school still in session on 12/23. Yupe. Their two weeks off will go through first week of January eliminating the question of if January 2 is a holiday or not. How does that day fall for your children?
    Sounds like you really have been totally getting bazillions of things done in major time constrained situation. I am concerned this can only be happening by you not sleeping at all. Hope this is not the case.
    Also sounds like you all will be having a wonderful holiday and that there is lots of help and cooperation with everyone supporting each other and the children.
    Thank you for posting all year and letting us share in your world … It is all so familiar and different at the same time. May your days be filled with joy this week, and may all your students be helpful, cooperative, and hardworking.

  3. My kids are in school this week as well, but I always was growing up as well, so it didn’t seem odd to me at all. It’s odd to me that they have the next 2 full weeks off and don’t go back until the 9th!

  4. Thank you for all your great posts this year, and for allowing us to follow along with all the ups and downs of your busy life. I hope you and your family have a happy and peaceful festive season. Best wishes from Scotland.

  5. You’re a badass putting a bunk bed together! My daughter’s school is out this week but the neighboring district is still in session. Strangely school for us starts back up Wed 1/4 instead of 1/3???

    I hope you can relax and enjoy the holidays. I’d love to learn more about the calm down bottles. I could use one for my office. 😬

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