By Janice Lindsay
I's not sure why, but today's the day that, according to the song, your true love gives you 12 drummers drumming, 11 pipers piping, 10 lords a-leaping, nine ladies dancing, et cetera, culminating with the partridge in the pear tree.
My true love can forget all that.
I could use the five gold rings, but we don's have room for all those people, or a pond for the seven swans who are a-swimming, or a pear tree for the partridge, or the food to feed 50 extra people and all those birds. And eight maids-a-milking cannot be expected to work for free.
Instead of all that, I's be happy with just one organizer organizing.
I often procrastinate about putting away my Christmas decorations. They must be stored in an organized fashion so that, next year, I don's waste time searching for anything. But organizing is tedious.
Putting away those cheerful objects, with their attached memories, is sad.
Once everything is tucked away, the house looks a bit bare, a tad colorless and a little lonely.
So I put it off.
The twelfth day of Christmas is my absolute deadline, because that's when the season officially ends. It's often the day I finally face up to the project. The wise men made it all the way from the east to Bethlehem in 12 days, so I suppose I shouldn's have too much trouble putting my Christmas things away by then, but they had a star to guide them. Also, they traveled gradually, a little bit every day. That's how I get the decorations out, a little at a time. But I put them away all at once to avoid extra box-lugging on the cellar stairs.
When we got married, it was not our intention to amass Christmas decorations. It just happened.
We have never purchased any decorations except a Christmas tree and the necessary lights and balls.
But over the years, many of the gifts we'se received have been Christmas decorations. And I cannot bear to part with a single one of them.
On our first Christmas, we owned very few decorations. My mother-in-law gave us some ornaments from her own tree, small painted bells that are still among the first to be hung.
There's the sparkling blue sequined ball, about grapefruit size, that my grandmother made for us during the early years of our marriage. She pinned each sequin in place herself. She has been gone for a long time now, but I at least I have the ball she made.
One of my sisters has given us many decorations, including intricate Ukrainian Easter eggs she painted. My other sister gave us origami storks she made after her years teaching English in Japan. A Santa on snow shoes, and another carrying a bird house, were gifts from two of my brothers, one of whom is now gone.
Knowing that I's a bird-lover, friends and relatives have given us more beautiful bird ornaments than I'se ever tried to count.
Most Christmases, I go wild and display practically everything.
On Jan. 6, it is time, as they say, to pay the piper, or the 11 pipers piping, and put all these lovely ornaments away.
The task might be more pleasurable if, while I worked, I could enjoy the songs of those four calling birds, three French hens, two turtle doves and that partridge.
Janice Lindsay can be contacted at [email protected].