Sunday, December 14, 2008

So Life is a Dance...

...and while I love music, sometimes I get tripped up and slowed down by the dance steps. I spent most of my time this week at work, humming Christmas melodies as I corrected pencil positions, checked sorted objects (cylinders, cubes, cones, spheres, rectangular prisms), got to know my new teacher aide, and re-arranged desks and two centers in anticipation of two new students starting in my class- one before the holiday break, one after. I read Christmas, Hannukah and Kwanzaa books to the Super Stars, and enjoyed helping students make their menorahs, Kwanzaa necklaces, and ornaments. The upcoming week will be spent working on grade cards, preparing for an international student to leave, and keeping the mood as calm as possible as excitement builds throughout the school. We'll make graham cracker "gingerbread" houses on Thursday with parents which is always a fun activity, and then take down all of the December decor to be sent home, leaving the room a quiet blank slate for a few weeks.

As Dear Husband was called away abruptly by Uncle Sam on Tuesday afternoon, most of my home schedule changed- many more chores, and far less crafting and baking took place despite my best laid plans. Holiday parties were missed, with other obligations taking their place, reminding me how much I'm going to dread the transition for DH's next deployment. The kids and I do well when he's gone, but only after we've created our new schedule, our new routine, which can take up to a month. Our lives require actual choreography, and let me tell you, the dance steps for a pre-schooler are much easier than they are for a teenager!

Chores were tackled yesterday, which gives me the opportunity to finish up on Christmas gifts today- hot glue gun, here I come! Wreaths, banners, quick floral arrangements, with pauses for baking and reading through my favorite blogs thrown in for good measure. Not a quick step, not a fox trot, but certainly not a slow waltz either...

Matt still has the right idea:


My latest Victoria magazine arrived, and reading Alexandra Stoddard's "Celebrating the Holidays in a Nontraditional Manner" has helped immensely. Our traditions of baking, putting up the tree and decorating the house probably won't change anytime soon thanks to having the preschooler, but my husband and I anticipate that there's a strong chance that we won't have an old fashioned "family" Christmas every year after the kids have left our home to live their own lives. Traveling and relocating so often these past five years, our family traditions have been the foundation upon which we build the newest scene, this year's "set," our temporary stage until we move again. Once we're settled for good, new traditions as well as new freedoms will be created. Quoting Stoddard:
A friend told me recently, "You have to grasp at life." If it's time to let go of the traditions of the past, be ready by having some daring adventure in mind. What threatens the human spirit most is allowing ourselves to become stuck in a routine. Traditions that were once wonderful should not evolve into obligations."

Change is inevitable, and so far, I'm thinking change is good.

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