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A Charlie Brown Christmas……………

December 3, 2009

About a year ago, I was decorating our house for Christmas and getting ready to move our family around the world. It was an overwhelming time and it felt a little rushed. In many ways, it is mostly a blur. Immediately after Christmas, I literally stuffed all the decorations into boxes, shoved them in the closets, and checked one more thing off my to do list. Christmas – done and undone – check. Then I began really focusing on moving my family to India.

What I didn’t realize is that almost exactly a year later, I would visit Singapore all decorated for Christmas and I would hear Christmas songs in every store. That I would buy candy canes in Singapore just because I could – they just don’t seem to be available in Delhi. And that when I got home I would just stick them in the cabinet. Because we were treeless. I don’t think I have ever been treeless. In fact, we usually put up two tress in the U.S. – one that has decorations the kids made and one that no one is allowed to touch but me. But now, all of our decorations are in the U.S. – except for a few that I bought at a craft show a few weeks ago.

My parents got divorced when I was pretty young, so I often celebrated Christmas twice. My mother’s birthday is Christmas day. It’s always been a wonderful time of year for me. After I got married, we started celebrating Christmas three or four times – just depending on how many different groups of family members were gathering together. Christmas Eve with number one hubby’s family is a wonderful, cherished tradition. Christmas morning with most of my family is magical. Then of course, we have our own party of five celebration. Throw in a few parties and some cookie baking and a white elephant gift exchange and you have yourself a Christmas season.

Well, most of that simply cannot happen when you live around the world from the people you hold most dear. Even putting up decorations seems like just going through the motions. But not being able to put up decorations is really depressing. We will be home for literally 20 hours Christmas day – the rest of the time we will be traipsing around the world. We are counting our blessings and know just how very lucky we are. But, something is missing.

Until last night. Last night, number one hubby brought home this. Now you know how he earns his status. Today after school we are going ornament shopping. We might even make some hot chocolate and sing a few Christmas songs.

Charlie Brown would be very, very proud. (For those of you not familiar with Charlie Brown – he is a cartoon character and one of his stories is about how he finds this little twig of a tree and brings it to life with love and lights. He turns nothing into magic with the spirit of Christmas.)

P.S. Someone is probably curious – so I will go ahead and answer the question now – yes, there are over a million Christians in India and they celebrate Christmas. Lucky for us! There are stores that sell trees and ornaments and decorations. It’s just that the town won’t be all decked out in red and green – it’s a big difference! But it feels better now.

19 Comments leave one →
  1. December 23, 2009 5:06 am

    actually its strange that I should read this. We recently walked into a mall and its full of Xmas decorations. As was my office. Its slow in coming, but I hope we get there someday.

    But I know what you mean because up until last year my lone Xmas tree was my only solace

  2. December 13, 2009 10:45 am

    Your husband is incredibly sweet and smart! I go nuts with decorating for Christmas, so I’d be incredibly depressed if I didn’t at least have a tree, no matter where I was.

  3. Nancy permalink
    December 5, 2009 4:12 pm

    YAAAH for number one hubby! Missing you especially this time of year.

  4. December 5, 2009 5:03 am

    So glad he found a tree to bring home. Your’s is much nicer than Charlie Brown’s tree though.

    • December 6, 2009 11:51 pm

      oh yes – it is a charlie brown tree because of the spirit behind it – not because of the way it looks – although every year I put a tree on our front porch that is slightly pathetic looking and I love it! I always call it my charlie brown tree with great affection!

  5. Gina permalink
    December 4, 2009 2:06 am

    It’s amazing how far away you guys are. I admire your willingness to sacrifice for your hubby. So yes, he earned some serious Charlie “Brownie” points for that precious tree. Hope you have a blessed Christmas and Happy New Year. Come home soon!

    • December 4, 2009 8:50 am

      It has really been a wonderful experience – and I love it – brownie points. hee hee

  6. December 4, 2009 12:14 am

    Just like how we feel on Diwali in USA, we get everything but then the neighbors come and ask “why are you celebrating Christmas so early?”

  7. December 4, 2009 12:06 am

    Have a post scheduled on this very subject … it’s all about perspective, eh?

  8. Rajni permalink
    December 3, 2009 11:42 pm

    This year you got an extra, early Christmas prezzie…A simple act of extreme thoughtfulness by the now “number one hubby’ ….something that he may not have had a chance to show if you were back in the US !!!! Is’nt that something really special you will take away from Delhi? The other perfect Christmas trees will still be there in the US in the years to come, but this may never happen again…every cloud and all that …..I hope you have a magical Christmas , and I hope Christmas day is full of peace (albeit with no snow…now if he can pull that off, please send him round to mine as well, ‘cos he just may have magical powers !!!!)

    • December 4, 2009 8:33 am

      you funny girl – it was a wonderful prezzie! and you are right there are so many things that happen here because we are here – and that I would never have gotten to do back in the U.S. – like become friends with you for example! I am one very lucky girl! I don’t think hubby has enough magic to make snow happen – but I will send him your way if he figures out how to do it!

  9. December 3, 2009 11:21 pm

    oops…you got a tree. misunderstood doh! number one hubby…what a guy!

    • December 4, 2009 8:32 am

      it’s funny what you miss when you don’t/can’t have it and what you take for granted when it is right in front of your eyes. Christmas very much lives in my heart – I hope you have a wonderful Christmas too – and Kwanzaa, of course! Cheers!

  10. December 3, 2009 11:18 pm

    I haven’t had a xmas tree since I was child and I’ve never beena christian. Strictly Kwanzaa in the Loco household, but i must admit Charlie Brown, Scrooge,Miracle on 34th St, It’s a wonderful life and Nat King Cole singing the Xmas song still take to a wonderful place where sleigh bells ring and snow glistens and I could walk in a winter wonderland (central park) with my special someone feeling lighter and warmer than any summer day. The Xmas spirit? I don’t know. But it’s something…something beautiful, and i love it. Japan just doesn’t do it for me. They try to manufacture what I just described, package it and offer it to you for free perhaps thinking because you didn’t pay for it you might forget it’s artificial…whatchagonado.
    wonderful post! Have a happy tree-free holiday. Xmas is in the heart and imagination too. 🙂

  11. Tottsmom permalink
    December 3, 2009 11:15 pm

    Glad to see you have a tree. When I was a Jr. in High School we moved to SC for a year. We left everything back in TX as the townhouse we rented was furnished. At Christmas we were w/o tree. So I told my Mom to hang an angel from the celing and tell everyone it was an invisible tree to use their own imagination. Well, need less to say my Mom ran with the idea and when I got home from school she had created an invisible tree with ornaments, lights and everything using fishing line. Enjoy your tree, have some coco or cider and listen to some Bing Crosby Chirstmas songes. Merry Christmas

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