We have cookies! We have decorations! We have gifts!

I feel like a WHO!

It looks and smells wonderfully Christmassy at our house, and things are finally—in spite of moments of panic—coming together. I have been a busy little elf, baking and wrapping, making cards, putting up the last few decorations… Traditionally, our family puts up the tree and does the decorating on the first weekend in December, but now that half the kids are married and have their own grown-up responsibilities, that didn’t quite work out. So we figured we’d do it on the second weekend, and, well, that didn’t go quite the way we planned either. Something about celebrating someone’s birthday…

Nine o’clock that night I persuaded my hubby to bring the tree up out of the basement so we could at least put it together and do the decorating the next day. But… my sweet girls jumped in and we got the tree all prettified before we went to bed. Somehow, I have been even further behind than usual this year. I am blaming it on putting my book out, and although there is much I could/should be doing in the way of promoting it, Christmas stuff comes first! The next few days will be filled with last-minute shopping, wrapping, and more baking. And then I’m going to have a read-a-thon! I have so many books on my reading list, waiting for me on my Kindle, and I can’t WAIT to mix up the ol’ hot cocoa (from scratch, of course), put my feet up, and read, read, read, read!

Usually, shopping via Amazon has been a life-saver. I shopped late this year. I paid the postage required to get it here on time—and yet there are still some packages in limbo. I received a single email telling me that one part of my order might be late because of weather. (Weather! The nerve! What kind of excuse is that? Back in the old days the mailman used to deliver in rain, sleet, and snow. Clearly, Santa needs to hire more dedicated elves.) But the box came yesterday! Woohoo! It looked like this:

They could have fit all the rest of my missing items in those spaces stuffed with paper! The package I ordered on the spur of the moment the day after the other stuff was ordered arrived already. Checking progress, I’m informed that Elvis—I mean the gifts!—have left the building, but they seem to be off the grid now. Santa must have superb anti-tracking defenses, that’s all I can say. 
He’d better hurry, or I might not share any of these with him: 
And the mailman? He delivered one of my packages to a house down the street! The label was clearly printed. I’m very glad our neighbor was so honest and kindly dropped it off where it belonged. Ah, the adventures of procrastination…
And in the end? I’m so very glad for the house we live in, my husband’s job, my family’s health and the wonderful times I’ve been able to spend with them through this last year. (Having grown-up kids is AWESOME. Just sayin’.) I’m grateful for friends old and new, for the experiences that have helped me learn and grow, and for my Savior, who is the real reason for the season. 
I wish you all a warm, bright, wonderful Christmas…