It’s complicated enough dealing with all our different living family members this time of year. Yet, for me and I’m sure many of you, holiday time and all it’s associated traditions, remind us of those we are missing, those who aren’t with us. It can be a certain food or a trip, the temperature outside or a song and consciously or not we are reminded. I was looking though old photo albums this week. I was trying to find some photos of my husband skiing as a child. I though my kids would love to see these as they now ski each weekend. In the process of looking I found many other photos, like the one above, that I didn’t even know we had taken and that I’m not sure I even remember.
Tonight, on Christmas Eve, we gather with my family. My dad was Jewish but grew up in Italy. Living in a country where Christmas was everything, their family gathered on Christmas Eve. It wasn’t religious but the tradition stuck. The other tradition was the Christmas cookies. I remember many December days where we would sit at the dining room table with mounds of walnut and hazelnut dough. I would take a piece and fashion it into my version of a crescent and place it on the baking sheet. Periodically my dad would review my “line-up” politely pointing out the ones in need of a makeover. I like these cookies but truth be told I like the memories attached much more. My brother in law is making the cookies for us this year.
Anyone who knew my dad or Guy knows he loved a good laugh. I can picture him, martini in hand, in his armchair by the tree looking dapper and taking in every conversation. If we were here tonight I would share this recent story. Yesterday I was getting ready for work. I pulled a black dress out of the closet I had purchased in November but never worn. You see, after work yesterday we were off to Swedish-Jewish Christmas with Marc’s family. Now you know why my 6 year old raised his hand when asked who celebrated Kwanza (we don’t by the way). He assumed we truly celebrated “everything.” Anyway, back to the dress. As I zipped the dress I remarked to my husband that it was tighter than I recall. For those of you who don’t know Marc he’s a “fixer.” If anything is broken Marc can rig it in a way to get it to work. He has the same approach to people. If I’m sick, it’s rarely “I’m sorry you’re not feeling well.” More likely “what are you taking?” or “did you go to the doctor?”
Marc looked at me and the dress expressionless and said “well you’re not running as much as you had been.” I stormed out of the room.
Marc followed me downstairs “c’mon you look great, you always look great, don’t be silly.” “First, you look great should have replaced that running comment” I said. “And second, nothing you say now matters.” Then, the fixer, said “I’m the same way I haven’t been on my bike as much since it’s cold even I have gained a couple of pounds.” I left for work annoyed but not really annoyed. After running an October marathon I’m running a couple of days a week and doing yoga or skiing on the others. I’m running 10 miles (in a good week) instead of 30. So my size 2 dress is a little snug and will probably me more snug after the Christmas cookie later today although I’m off for a run now.
Are your clothes, despite exercise, a little snug? Has your significant other ever said something while you got ready that made you nuts?