The Motherboard at Christmas

dishwasher 2019Kid: “Why is a computer so smart?”
Mother: “It listens to its motherboard.”

We had a dishwasher we really liked until it stopped communicating with its motherboard. At least that’s what the repairman said after studying a series of blinking light codes. I didn’t like the sound of that and I feared hearing the words, “You need a new dishwasher.” His work on resetting the motherboard failed and he turned to me, “You need a new dishwasher.”

It was either that or a new motherboard. After Christmas Eve 2019comparing the cost of a motherboard vs. new dishwasher, I dashed out to the big box store that evening for a new dishwasher on the last day of a good sale. I came home with the same model, a brand we like… that now includes a cutlery shelf and an extended warranty.

Everyone has different holiday traditions. Our tradition is a Christmas Eve feast and we needed that dishwasher to host the feast. We spent time making the table festive and inviting for arriving family. No reader would want to see an ‘after’ photos of the same table following 3 tykes and 5 adults feasting on traditional goodies…  ending with a delicious Yule Log (La Maison Navarre) and figgy pudding… and a off key chorus of song!

Our tradition on Christmas Day is always a late morning brunch hosted by my daughter… egg casserole, grits, french toast casserole, scalloped potatoes, sweet rolls… a meal we could return to throughout the morning as we relax by a fire and watch the little ones.

That was all two days ago and now we have returned to regular routines. I’m still working on my holiday puzzle, listening to holiday music, but thinking more about our two Christmas trees and rooms full of holiday decor. Mentally, I’m planning the Big Takedown shortly after we ring in the new year.

I wouldn’t trade a minute of the decorating, volunteering, the parties and festivities leading up to the holiday, and it’s fun to trim the trees and deck the halls and be with family and friends… but it’s a bit of a comedown to think about spending one or two days disassembling and packing everything away for another year. The rooms will look austere for awhile. It may be that everyone feels a bit like this, yes?

 

Winter Solstice

Today is the winter solstice and instead of a few feet of snow in New Hampshire, we have a winter soaker rolling up the east coast with high winds and areal flooding alerts. Postponed is our neighborhood winter solstice bonfire planned for dusk tonight. For months, one enthusiastic neighbor has piled cut tree limbs and yard debris in a cleared area awaiting this day where we would gather at dusk with marshmallows and hot chocolate to celebrate on the shortest day of the year. We will still gather to celebrate the winter solstice but it’ll be after Christmas when the days are beginning to grow longer in the Northern Hemisphere.

orangesI had early thoughts of not doing much in the way of decorating for the holiday this year, but that did not happen. With Christmas just a few days away, not one, but two (artificial) Christmas trees have finally been decorated, stockings are hung by the chimney with great care along with greens on the mantle and wreaths and swags on front and back doors. We’ve baked several goodies, made cookies and more. Cards have been sent, gifts have been mailed out and gifts are still arriving in our mailbox. Dehydrated orange slices are adorning our holiday trees substituting for the multitude of older ornaments passed on to the next generation. I think I like the oranges for a change anyway.

SantasYoung grandchildren have visited, eaten sweets and been thrilled over decorations of bright lights and ornaments, hanging evergreens with nutcrackers, Santas and reindeer in every room.

We’ve gathered with friends for holiday cocktails, luncheons, open houses, shopping, and a holiday flower arranging workshop that I chaired this week. I guess sugarplums are dancing in heads everywhere.

It took me a while but I finally decided that sugarplums are very good thing. I hope I remember this next Christmas…