The thought of Christmas was making me anxious for weeks.  I thought of all the decorating and shopping and more shopping and cooking and baking and crafting and shopping and wrapping and planning and… I was feeling very scrooge-y and stressed and bah-humbug-y.

Until I went shopping with my mom and found the most perfect gifts for Maddie and Katie.  I cannot wait to see their faces on Christmas morning.

Until we unwrapped the pieces of the Christmas village, hand-painted by my mother-in-law so many years ago.  Maddie and Katie put the houses and buildings just so, and they can’t wait to get home today to set up all the people.

Until we approached the front of the line to to get a picture with Santa and we were greeted by Mrs. Claus. “Oh, there you are.  I’ve been waiting for you.  I heard you two have been very good girls”.  I heard Maddie catch her breath and saw the wonder in her eyes.

Until my husband lifted Maddie high above his head so she could place the angel atop of the decorated tree.

Until we waited outside in the cold and long line for a horse-drawn wagon ride, but we spent the time singing Christmas carols and taking silly pictures and laughing.

Until I sung “You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I’m telling you why. Santa Claus is commming to town” to Katie and watched her listen intently to every word.

Until I planned an enchanted evening of chocolate milk and cookies and Christmas lights which I can’t reveal just yet.  It’s a surprise.

Until I remembered that Christmas also means two long weeks at home with my favorite people.


Mrs. Claus



15 thoughts on “Until

  1. It’s beautifully set up, Dana, & you’ve carried me into that spirit too. What gifts we give ourselves if we only stop & think about what is really going to happen! I love the picture of Mrs. Claus with your girls. Makes me wonder if my grand-girls have see a “Mrs. Claus”. I’ve given them the new poetry book, Santa Clauses, & they are loving those little stories.

  2. It is so easy to get caught up in the things we “have” to do for the Christmas holiday that we sometimes forget the simple joys the season brings. Here’s to enjoying those simple pleasures.

  3. Until is the perfect way to hold us as you find your way to what makes the holidays real for you and your family, Dana. Hope you are planning to join my 2014 video of images from the year. 🙂

  4. I love the use of until to express the things that need to be in place to feel the spirit. They aren’t big things but things you enjoy and and sometimes the enjoyment has to wait until…

  5. Your repetition of UNTIL brought me to the edge of tears, Yes, it IS indeed when we stop and let the wonder and magic take over that we celebrate. Crafting and making and cooking are all on my “WANNA DO” list too….but the best holiday seasons are the ones when we let wannas be and go with the should dos.

  6. Such a gorgeous piece of writing. The repetition of “until” is beautiful. I think I loved Mrs. Claus and your girls the best, but there were so many absolutely perfect details. I’ve been feeling pretty bah-humbuggy this year, but you have made me want to get busy celebrating! Thank you!

  7. I love how you hold on to everything with the word “until.” Everything that brings out the beauty and joy that surrounds the season with your family traditions all wrapped up in it.

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