Ho ho ho!

Just call me Santa — today I got the last of my Christmas packages for the States packed up and shipped out.  Whew.  Only 10 days until Christmas Eve (yikes) and nearly a full week after my “very latest day” I wanted to send them, but they’re out there, in the Austrian postal system and out of my hands.  (It’s very much like the feeling I get when I’m on a plane and it starts rolling down the runway — whatever’s going to happen, there’s nothing I can do about it now.)

I actually really enjoyed getting everything wrapped, bubble wrapped, sorted out into boxes, taped up and sent out.  I’m really missing everyone at home, and the gifts were both chosen and sent with a lot of love.  It’ll be hard to not be there on Christmas morning, to not get to see everyone’s faces when they open their gifts.  But having to get everything together now, with 10 days to go until Christmas, is actually introducing a little bit of the feeling of excited anticipation that comes from giving Christmas gifts into this earlier time.  It was really fun to imagine my family members receiving and opening the boxes, and the gifts inside.  It’s giving me some of the warm and fuzzy feeling of Christmas Day, but a little bit early, which is nice.

The boys helped me get everything packed up.  They were very excited, too (although Benjamin is a little frustrated that he can’t open his gifts now).

And now, I can rest a little.  There’s still a lot to do:  get the tree, decorate the tree, finish shopping (only a few more things to get), wrap gifts, maybe do some baking.  But a big part of my pre-Christmas “to do” list is done now, and that’s very satisfying and very liberating.  10 days out from Christmas I usually start to feel the pressure of getting everything done.  Right now, I’m looking at what I need to do over the next 10 days, and it seems completely reasonable and quite doable.  I think I’ll watch a Christmas movie and enjoy the difference.