Opinion

Hodge: Getting an early and creative jump on our festive season

Twisted as it may sound, Christmas actually began in the Hodge house on Nov. 12.

It would have actually started sooner if not for our respect for honouring the Armistice (Remembrance Day). First thing early on Nov.12, Tez and I actually began to hang some yuletide decorations around the home with the determined plan to bring some cheer into our house.

2012 has not exactly been a bonus year for our household so we decided to change our luck and the negative energy by shoving Christmas down our own throats.

It’s proven to be a great plan.

In reality, decorating the house a tad earlier than most folks is a tradition I started about six years ago.

It was an inspired moment I had on my own by deciding to put the positive edge on another year that had not been so fabulous—and as a way, at the same time, to kick start Christmas with some musical buddies.

That particular year the decorations went up in my basement early because I had decided to have an after concert party following the second annual Night of the Arts concert.

Since the event had carried a theme of a kickoff to Christmas I decided the late night after party for volunteers and musicians should have the same theme.

Since then, the decorating and after party tradition has just been too much fun to not continue.

However this year, Nov. 12, was a record date for the earliest decorations hung.

I should have known that with such an early start to our Christmas season there would be some new and rather delightful events that may occur between then and the day the jolly fat fellow arrives with the goodies.

However, I never quite anticipated what the other ‘kid’ in this household would dream up. (It’s a good thing Teresa was a little crazy when I  met her or I would have drove her there in no time.)

With a depressingly low amount of income generated by moi in the past year, Tez and I had decided that we would try and curb our spending this year on gifts—and simply come up with a number of cheap yet fun items for each other.

Having Teresa’s daughter and three year old granddaughter living with us only adds to the potential fun and inspired Tez to hunt for some advent calendar items.

Somewhere in the process, Tez decided (as of Dec. 12) to start a 12 days of Christmas gift frenzy for me.

Since none of us could seem to find out exactly when the 12 days of Christmas are really supposed to take place, we decided it was the 12 days before Christmas.

So the other morning I awoke to a small package and a note which read, “On the first day of Christmas my true love gave to me a partridge in a pear tree.” Then the note continued, “Sorry but I couldn’t find the partridge so I am giving you some pears from the tree the partridge flew away from.” Inside the bag was a tin of canned pears.

Very cute and I love pears.

Thursday morning, on day two, I awoke to another note and package. “On the second day of Christmas my true love gave to me two turtle doves…Unfortunately, I didn’t have any, but will some candy turtles on a bar of dove soap do?”

Sure enough, inside was a pack of chocolate turtles and a bar of soap.

(Full points for the creativity, but a slight question of conflict of interest on this gift. I am not a big fan of chocolate turtles but Tez loves them).

Clearly my lovely but somewhat crazy wife is on a roll here and I am the lucky benefactor.

However, I must admit to a mild amount of apprehension mixed in with a huge heaping of holiday anticipation.

What the heck is coming next? If I remember correctly the 12 days of Christmas tune mentions a number of other interesting gifts including tomorrow’s three French hens which intrigues me.

Of keen interest is  the upcoming dozen drummers drumming (the neighbours ought to love that) and nine ladies dancing (bring it on).

However, I admit to some consternation when it comes to the eight  maids a milking (milking what – my hungry bank account? And where do we put the cows later?), the 10 lords a leaping (we have a tiny house and no tights please), and the six geese a laying (I am allergic to hay and straw, there is no chicken bylaw, and we have three cats—it could get ugly).

Yup, the whole situation is enough to make me slightly afraid of going to sleep—not knowing what awaits me in the morning.

Stay tuned folks, it’s only going to get weirder from here on.

Shudder!

***

A last reminder to take part in the annual Charlie’s Angels Christmas List. Take a few minutes and email me names of people you consider personal angels in your life; folks who have gone above and beyond in kindness to help others in the year.

Email your names and reasons to hodgepodge2@shaw.ca.

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