I mean the deep, bone exhaustion of days piled up on top of one another till their like a mountain strapped on the back of a bike going up hill and I am straining on the pedals with scrawny stick legs.... and probably wearing a ridiculous bike helmet all the while.
(Must make flashbacks of gawky childhood years stop....)
Friday night we headed out to the glittering metropolis of Camrose ( a farm town of about 15, 000) to do our monthly grocery shopping. I wanted to get to the one grocery store that has been able to supply our needs for our celebration of Dutch Christmas (Sinterklaas) in the past. Alas, this year there was no Chocoladhagel, papernoten or stroop waffels to be found.
There wasn't even any appelstroop.
So, after filling the cart with 250.00 of dry goods etc, (and getting a free turkey) we headed over to the local mall for a meeting with St. Nick himself.
Allow me to insert a note here about Santa Clause and his place in our family.
Remember that kid, Ian, I mentioned a week ago, who's practically a fixture in our home? Well, last year, he cornered Ava Grace on the stairs and told her all about the workings of this Father Christmas and how he would bring her WHATEVER and AS MUCH as she wanted for Christmas.
I could see her eyes growing and a light lit within them. Such a thing had never even entered her head as possible! ANY TOYS she wanted! AND HE WOULD BRING THEM IF SHE BUT ASKED.
This surely must be the meaning of not just Christmas, but life altogether.
Fortunately this parent swooped in and educated her small daughter, that this gift giving saint is a fun part, but not the true meaning of Christmas and that he only gives one gift that must always be under $15.00.
On with the story.....
Santa of course has remained a celebrity in Ava Grace's eyes and ranks somewhere below Jesus and above her teacher Ms Whalen.
Where her patient mother falls on this list depends on the day....
Waiting in the lineup to Santa's styrofoam village, she made everyone laugh with the sincere clasping of her hands and her excited gushing, "Oh mama! He's here! He's really here! I can see him! and I'm going to meet him and talk to him (insert squealing noise here)!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!"
She was almost like me at a Hanson concert. :)
(I laughed at how she approached him like a king on a throne. It cracked me up.)
Jackson, despite his dapper attire, did not make it into any photo ops other than this attempt with Father Christmas. He took one look at the kindly old man and began shrieking like sharp pointy things were being thrust at him. I was disappointed because I had put him in a bow tie and everything.
We are not amused
I'll pick up the pace now...
Saturday we hosted the inlaws for brunch and then the faithful pair of them helped Kev load up half of our worldly possessions into two vehicles and trucked it to our new house.
Later that same day, there was very loud Boney M Christmas music ringing through our halls as I scrubbed and scoured my whole house in a pair of rolled up jeans, Ancient Missions trip T shirt and a jaunty bandanna tied about my head while the kidlets went swimming with Dad.
Sunday morning we ran around like a lot of disorganized, well-dressed headless chickens and then threw ourselves into our van and trekked an hour down the highway for church. We only realized in the parking lot we had forgotten diapers.
Towards the end of the lovely service, I got one of my freakish migraines and lost vision in my left eye. I took my prescription medication which helps, but also reduces my vitality to that of a limp dishrag because of it's side effects.
( I will post more about these migraines and medications in a later post, because I've been doing much thinking/researching etc. on the whole thing lately).
This time around the medication also gave me wicked hot flashes so I rode home back down the highway with the air conditioning on on my side of the van, wearing only the camisole top I had on under my church attire. (my passenger window even fogged up, I was giving off so much heat, I kid you not.)
Sunday afternoon, I stayed home with Jackson while Kevin and Ava Grace went to a family Christmas Party hosted by his work. I followed Jackson around the basement wrapped in pair of sweatpants and a shawl blanket with a mug of tea, now freezing from having given off my year's worth of body heat in 2 hours. ( It's monday now, and I still can't seem to get warm.)
Ava Grace came home with a bunch of cheap plastic Dora the explorer toys (which I could rant about in another post, but wont here) which she was given from a VERY sketchy Santa Clause indeed.
Kevin was very quick to inform her that THIS man was NOT the REAL Santa and only a strange man dressed up like him. This probably staved off a lot of trauma right around the time he pulled down his pants in a cheap gag to reveal his "plastic bum" shorts from a tacky joke shop.
I was rather speechless when she related this tale to me.
We ended our weekend with Chicken Alfredo, cuddles on the couch, and a couple games of crazy eights.
All is well that ends well I suppose.
Ah, the irony of a restful Monday.
And on it I am thankful for:
21. My In-laws. I really am blessed with their support and willingness to help and serve.
22. Naptimes for the whole family
23. Bowties on baby boys.
24. Half the House being packed and shipped
25. Fantastic teaching from God's Word that produces real change in me.
26. The volunteers in the church nursery and Sunday school who do such great things with my kids.
27. Friends who help me out short notice
28. Countdowns on the Calendar and things to celebrate.
29. Emmanuel. God. Is. With. Us
30. A good night's rest.
*The Alliterations are for Keri.