Saturday, January 06, 2007

My LEAST Favorite Part of the Holidays this part -- cleaning up and putting away.

In the same way that bringing out the boxes and gleefully unwrapping each item in December feels so joyous and hopeful, breaking it all down, wrapping it all up, and shoving it all back into the dark closet in January feels so sad and disheartening.

Seattle is wonderful, and in August there's no place on earth like our Emerald City. Even after 15 years, I can't get over how the summer air smells like camping in the Pacific Northwest. It's glorious! And the spring months in Seattle have their own charm -- teasing, hopeful, ever-changing. But the dead-of-winter months -- January until March --can be excruciating around here. And this year, with all its bizarre weather, seems to be especially so. The cold, the wind and the rain are relentless and cruel, and those who are prone to S.A.D. (seasonal affective disorder -- a real diagnosis!) suffer horribly during those months.

I always picture a chapter from Little House on the Prairie, in which Laura Ingalls and her family just sit in their dark little cabin as the wind whirls and the snow piles up outside... waiting, waiting, waiting for any sign that spring is around the corner.

So today, in between the incessant work tasks (I don't expect that to let up until at least July), I'll methodically put all our holiday joy into dark, cold boxes and move them into that dank, hidden space under the steps to wait out another year. And, as I do every year as I put that last box away, I'll say a little prayer (well, as close to a prayer as I ever get) that our family will again be healthy and happy when we bring the holiday boxes out again next year.

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1 comment:

vailian said...

Most people here live in apartments, and from January 6th (trees are traditionally taken down then) they get thrown out the windows, often from a very great height, and are picked up by the trashmen during the next week or so. In any case, it is wise to keep glancing up when you walk down the street, especially if you hear a rapidly approaching whoosh.

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