A few weeks before the Christmas holiday, orders for my Etsy shop started pouring in. I sold so many sets of wool dryer balls that I ran out of wool and had to take a quick trip to Frankenmuth to buy 20 more pounds (which is almost gone already!). Then I spent day after day making more dryer balls. I was making dryer balls for hours on end, and I was barely keeping up with demand. On my busiest day I shipped 11 sets of dryer balls – that’s what I usually ship in a month!
Needless to say – while I was busy concentrating on my Etsy sales, everything else came to a screeching halt. The house was a wreck, I didn’t have time to write for the blog, and we completely ran out of fresh fruit. It was insane. But we survived, and now I know what to expect for next year.
Besides my Etsy business, my family had a lot of other holiday business to attend to. Luckily, we were able to make time for all of our normal Christmas traditions.
Cutting Down Our Christmas Tree
Every year we go to the same Christmas tree farm to choose and cut down our Christmas tree. We love walking through the rows and rows of trees, choosing the one that looks just right. We love riding on the horse drawn carriage while we wait for our tree to be bailed up. And we love listening to Christmas music on the radio during the drive. And then it’s my favorite part of all – we always order Chinese takeout and chow down while we put the tree up and decorate it.
Delivering Food and Gifts in Detroit
Years ago, before my husband and I were even married, we volunteered every year to deliver food and gifts to families living in the Cass Corriodor, an area of Detroit with the highest rate of unemployment and the lowest income level in the City of Detroit.
As soon as The Goose was able to walk on his own, we started taking him with us. He loved wearing his Santa Hat, going to each of the houses, handing out gifts and wishing the families a Merry Christmas. But when our church closed earlier this year, we were sure that there would be no deliveries for us this year.
We were pleasantly surprised when we were contacted by a member of our old church who had set-up a program at her new church. And The Goose was so excited to participate again this year.
Picture With Santa Claus
Ever since The Goose was just a few weeks old, we’ve headed to the mall to have his picture taken with Santa. It’s not always the same mall, and it’s never the same Santa, but it’s always so much fun. We stand in line, talking about what he’s going to say when it’s his turn. And every year my husband and I
end up buying just one more gift when The Goose inevitably asks Santa for something he’s never mentioned to us before.
Wayne County Lightfest
Each year, Wayne County sets up a holiday-themed light display along Hines Drive. The display includes more than 40 different light displays, and we always have such a fun time looking for our favorites from years past. On our way to the lightfest, we always pick up a pizza from Little Ceasar’s and eat it in the car (partly because it’s dinner time, partly because it helps keep The Goose awake in the event of a long line).
Every year we start Christmas off by attending church with our whole family – all of The Goose’s aunts, uncles and cousins pile into two (sometimes three!) pews. This year, we were all surprised when The Goose’s oldest cousin, who has been out of the country for a year and a half, joined us! It was so great to have the whole family together, because as the kids get older and older, the odds of us all spending the evening together are slimmer and slimmer.
After church, we all go to my sister-in-law’s house to officially kick off the Christmas celebration. We eat tons of delicious food, open gifts, and enjoy each other’s company. The kids run around,
working off their sugar buzz from eating too many cookies, and the grown-ups sit around the fire sharing stories of past Christmases.
At the end of the night, we head home just in time to find the pajamas that Jaime, our Elf on the Shelf, always leaves for us. Jaime always chooses a theme for our pajamas. Last year it was Batman, this year it was Peanuts.
Then we leave a pile of reindeer food on our driveway, set out some cookies and milk for Santa, and The Goose heads straight to bed while Santa’s elves start working on getting the gifts under the tree.
Christmas Day is usually fairly relaxed. The Goose wakes up, then we all wake up and the gift opening frenzy begins! We open gifts, eat breakfast, and spend a lazy afternoon checking out our new toys, listening to Christmas music and enjoying our family time. We eat an early dinner, then settle in to watch a movie and have popcorn. All in all, it’s not a bad way to spend the holiday season. And we look forward to it year after year…