***This was originally posted on the Chicago Moms Blog***
We’re starting my favorite two weeks of the year. It’s not just Christmas and New Year’s that make it special. It’s not just that the girls are going to be home on break. It’s that my husband is on vacation for the next two weeks. My husband has a lot of vacation, a perk that comes with marking your 25th anniversary with the same company. He has been taking the last two weeks of the year off for as long as we’ve been married. It’s completely wonderful.
We try to have some fun while he’s off. This year we’ll take our annual trek downtown to see the lights and sights. We’re going to the Museum of Science and Industry to see the Christmas trees and the Jim Hensen exhibit. We’ll do lot of outdoor things like hiking in the snow or ice skating in a local park — weather permitting, of course. We’ll celebrate the holidays and watch too many bowl games.
The best part of his time off is the other stuff we get done. The “let’s get organized” bits that we accomplish during these two weeks makes it so much easier to move back into the post-holidays school/work/life routine. We’ll do some stock-up shopping so we can quickly make lunches when school resumes. We’ll take down the Christmas decorations and put the house back in order. We’ll do some preliminary work on our taxes, which are always complicated as I’m self-employed. We’re planning a pretty big backyard project for this summer, so he’ll spend time at City Hall figuring out what permits we need. We’ll try to get the paperwork completed and back so we can start processing the permits.
I realize most people don’t get excited knowing their building permits are being processed and the garage freezer is full, but it gives us a sense of security. Even if we cannot get out to the store due to the winter weather sure to hit in January, we will have food. Even if we have to alter the schedule a bit due to the spring weather, the project will be ready to start.
It will only last a few weeks, but for those few weeks into 2011, we’ll be organized and ahead of the to-do list. Just the thought of it gives me hope for a less stressful 2011. Oh, I realize it won’t last, but I’ll take the feeling while I can get it.