Twas the night before the night before Christmas…

…and all through the house, everything was going to hell in a handbasket. Our twelve-year-old son threw one of his trademark temper tantrums (for which we can’t really even begin to get him help until the middle of January, since, when we called at the beginning of November, that was the first appointment the psychiatrist had) because a new toy was released today and he’s mad that he won’t be getting it for Christmas. In the middle of his fit, my mother-in-law called to tell us that she’s canceling the traditional Christmas Eve celebration at her house. My parents just called and decided that we won’t be able to have dinner with them on Christmas day, because it’s too much stress on my dad, who has to work on Wednesday morning.

I completely understand where he’s coming from, and don’t fault my parents at all for their decision. They’ve spent the last week (with a little bit of help from us) moving my great aunt out of the house she’s lived in for 15 years and into a new house closer to us. She officially moved in yesterday, and my parents spent all day over there today helping her unpack a very small portion of the things that are in boxes. I’m sure my dad will probably be back over there again tomorrow, at least for a short while. Then, on Christmas day, my brother and his wife are flying in sometime around noon. Then, as I mentioned, my dad has to go back to work. For anyone that would be a lot of stress, and for my dad (and, to be quite honest, for myself) stress is usually multiplied exponentially by the fact that we do not cope well with things not going according to plan.

Anyway, just felt like venting for a minute. Any of those things by themselves wouldn’t be all that bad, but all together, it’s a terribly drastic change from Christmases past. My parents are still planning to come up and share breakfast with us on Christmas morning, but they’ll be heading back home before lunch. Then, we’ll probably have our “Christmas dinner” with them, and my brother and sister-in-law and my great aunt, on the day after Christmas.

Other than that, Mrs. Lincoln, how was the play?