My favorite day of the year usually is December 26th. There is just something about that day after Christmas lazy day… Don’t get me wrong though, I love, love, love spending Christmas eve with family and all the traditions that go into that and also Christmas day. I love that my kids are older and the big gifts now are maybe a trip or gift cards. They like money, they want to spend money on what they want, and this year my wife and I finally realized that we just aren’t cool enough to know exactly what clothes our daughters would love.
My kids can’t hear the bell anymore on Christmas, and I thought that was going to really take away from all the Christmas magic that we felt from years past. But, something really awesome happened. I got to watch my girls with their younger cousins. They were now trusted with the big Santa secret. I watched as they talked to their cousins and got really excited to show they where Santa might be on a map on Christmas. Every once in a while saying something about Santa and looking over at my wife or I and winking to us or cracking a smile. They were in on the secret and it made it such a fun experience.
My daughters also really love “traditions” in our family, which helps keep our spirits up during the holidays. It’s easy to get lost in being older and not caring about Christmas, right, it’s just another day sometimes. But, then they start packing their sleepover bag for Nana’s cause they always sleep over on Christmas, or the annual traditions of Nana and my oldest watching The Sound of Music while everyone else who is left there passes in and out from a food or booze coma, and you remember why you love these times. I get to see that even though Santa might not be around, the magic is still alive and well.
But, as I sit here on the day after Christmas I can’t help but smile. I woke up to work from home early this morning. Grabbed a cup of coffee and enjoyed the silence while I turned on the laptop. The dog slept a little extra and finally made his way down to lay in the kitchen right near where I sat. He loves to be in the same room as me while I work, even if there is other activity going on, he always checks in on me. The wife made her way downstairs after a nice long sleep and the kids returned home from Nana and Papa’s.
There is NO urgency to this day and I think that is why I love it. My youngest is cooking waffles and organizing all her gifts while my wife and oldest binge some new Netflix vampire show. My OCD for cleaning, and laundry and preparing for whatever we have next takes a day off. I don’t get pissed with the laziness that I normally do. I don’t yell at the kids to clean, because for whatever reason, today is the only day I really enjoy living in a little bit of filth.
We get to just be, nothing is expected. There is no rush to get thru the day. There is no yelling at each other, we all just get to be. Tomorrow I can go back to the guy who gets mad a sock is not in a drawer or tries to punch a wall when he hears “why do I need to make my bed, I’m just gonna lay in it anyway”. Today is for doing absolutely nothing. It’s not a day to get ahead. It’s not a day for anything other than trying to set a world record for laziness.
Extended family and friends over the last couple days has been and always will be great. I’m very lucky to have incredible people in my life. My family and my wife’s family are all the same. I never feel like I am at my in-laws and my wife feels the same. I guess it helps that we have been together for 22 years or so. I look forward to all things Christmas so much. I enjoy when my brothers, sister and I are forced to be nice to each other one night a year, I look forward to being the last ones left at my in-laws on Christmas day and scratching our yearly scratch lottery tickets. But, then the day after Christmas just happens. Maybe that’s why I love it, because I never expect it or look forward to it. There is something when it’s just my wife, myself and my two beautiful girls in our home.
The kids are always at some type of practice, my wife is always working one of her many jobs, but on December 26th all of that stops. It’s like someone hit the pause button on life. And we are in a perfect spot right now, the wife and I get along and the kids aren’t too cool for us just yet. And I know there aren’t too many December 26ths left for my tribe exactly like this one was, so I enjoyed the hell out of it.
I love my tribe…