I must admit that I have been putting on the “stiff upper lip” face for the first Thanksgiving without the kids in 20 years.  I kept finding the silver lining in everything.  My daughter, Bailey, is having the time of her life and helping others in Cambodia. Wright, my son, got to experience Green Bay, real winter weather, and to visit with his girlfriend’s family.  My kids are starting to live their lives – excellent – I couldn’t be prouder.

Naturally, all our friends came through with flying colors – offers of meals, drinks, parties, drinks, activities, and…drinks.  I could not have asked for a better Holiday – nor should I even try.

Today, I finally had my #didn’tseethatcoming moment.  Time to put up the Christmas tree, festoon it with lights, and ♪Deck the Halls♪ with decorations.  There was a monumental problem.  My taller-than-me, stronger-than-me, and (maybe) smarter-than-me son was not here.  I didn’t have anyone to bark orders at. Genevieve (four legs) can’t hear me and usually doesn’t mind anyway.  And I am not stupid enough to give orders to my wife.  Most importantly, I didn’t have anyone to blame for it being done “WRONG!” nor the pleasure of correcting the offender…only if I start talking to myself.

The tree is now up, the lights are just right and decorating the house is well in progress.  I learned some things today:

  • The boxes of decorations get heavier every year.  We didn’t buy any new stuff – honest. They just got heavier – I can’t explain it.
  • Putting up the tree is a tag-team sport.  Solo takes too long, gives you a headache, and even though I was using my arms – it made my ankles hurt…
  • Leaning out to put lights on the tree requires not only balance but also a handhold.  It appears that the gravitational pull of the earth has shifted because I “usta” lean out on one foot using a rickety ladder. Not any more; that mysterious gravitational shift made it impossible.
  • Finally, those stupid little fuses in the lights shrunk from last year.  They were much bigger last year when I had to replace one.

Now everything is ready so let me be one of the first to say “Happy Holidays!”