“Problems cannot be solved at the same level of awareness that created them.” – Albert Einstein

Today at 1pm officially begins Christmas.  At least for me.

It’s been a rough week.  I don’t often talk about my work much because it’s either 1.) confidential, 2.) obscure, or 3.) gruesome.  This week it was all three.  It wasn’t an aspect of my job I enjoy, but it IS an aspect of my job, and I have a lot of integrity about that.

I am glad to be home.

I am glad for the barista at the Atlanta airport who said – “Merry Christmas, glad to have you here!” as she handed me my coffee yesterday as I passed through, bleary eyed.  I told her I was grateful she was there providing me with toasty beverage, and I was grateful I wasn’t staying long.  More grateful than she may ever know.  I was going home.

I was glad to see my son, who started with his “Momma-sucks-for-leaving-me” scowl, only to be thwarted when I pulled a candy cane out of my leather satchel and popped it in his mouth, leaving him all smiles and sticky pink hands.  I was grateful to the hotel receptionist who handed me that candy cane with a smile as I left, never knowing how much it made my day – and my son’s.

I was happy to see my Christmas lights on my house as I pulled in the driveway.  I could overlook the unseasonably warm weather and the lack of snow and still smell Christmas in the air.

Our house in lights

We are leaving today to visit Kris’s family with a load of presents for our ever-burgeoning numbers of nieces and nephews, whom we will attempt to keep from burning down the house (or each other) for two days.  Then, on Christmas Eve, we will head back home.


Home, where we will put our son to bed and I will play the role of Santa for the first time, sharing with my son that magical moment of waking to a tree ablaze in lights and tinsel, rising over the secret joys of childhood, wrapped in gleaming color.   We will breakfast on Christmas cookies and cocoa, and we will arrange his Nativity – the Mommy and the Daddy and the Baby Jesus – while the warm smells of roasting turkey and cider fill the house. 

We will finally have that “First Christmas” together as a family, one year delayed from the day when we walked into this empty house, five days before Christmas, trumping four months of itinerant uncertainty.  I felt like I had been holding my breath until that moment.  No other Christmas present could match the key to that door.


We have come in a full cycle of the seasons, back to where we stepped in from a life interrupted.  This year we will christen our little house in the woods with the twinkling of lights, the crinkle of paper and the smell of cinnamon and sage.  The walls that surround us will grow beyond the wood frame and drywall into the fabric of our life.  Home is the place where you grow your soul into the rich soil of memory.  Home is where your heart rests in those quiet moments when a smell or a sound brings you back to the places of childhood joy.

May we all go home for Christmas.

December 22nd, 2006 at 10:41 am
2 Responses to “Bells will be ringing…”
  1. 1
    jodi Says:

    What a wonderful x-mas story, even better than the cheesy movies I blogged about!

    But seriously, I wish you guys the merriest of Christmas and I hope you enjoy every minute of your much deserved happiness!

  2. 2

    Such a sweet and lovely post. There really is no place like home. Merry Christmas to you Robbin. May God bless you and your sweet family in the coming year with all things good.