I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m already tired of talking about the holidays. Gifts, trees, decorations, shopping, food … blah, blah, blah-de-blahblahblah. I mean, come on people! Get over it already.
Oh, I know what you’re thinking. You think I’m a Grinch. You think I’m some Christmas-hating freak. That I don’t get all giddy and full of warm fuzzy feelings this time of year. Well, that’s not true at all.
I don’t hate Christmas. I just don’t get Christmas.
We didn't celebrate when I was a kid. I didn't have a picture-perfect holiday season like a lot of people I know. My mother (a bona fide hippie) could barely remember her own name half the time. I have no idea who my dad is (long story) and my brother left home a long time ago. So I don’t have much of a family, and what family I do have isn't the kind of family you spent time with, y'know?
That makes Christmas a difficult time for me. I'm not whining about it. It is what it is.
We never decorated a tree or had some big celebratory meal on Christmas Day, so I don't have any decorating tips or holiday recipes to share. And I sure never woke up to presents from Santa Claus on Christmas morning. My mother was big on the the truth (sometimes a bit too big, really) so she made sure I knew the truth about that story from the time I was old enough to understand what she was saying. And yeah, I know, the reason for the season, except I never went to church as a kid either, so that's not part of it for me.
Anyway, Christmas doesn't exactly hold a bunch of magic for me. And actually, that makes me kind of sad at times. Because my truth is that I’d like nothing more than to buy a bunch of presents and deliver them to my loved ones. I just don’t have a bunch of loved ones to give presents to. That’s kind of the problem. At least, I haven’t had in the past.
Actually, I guess you could say that my friends at Zydeco are like family to me. Rita is a terrific boss and everybody likes her. And the rest of the gang is pretty great, too. I'll bet if I told any of them how I feel, they'd make sure I was part of their family. But I don't want to get in the way and besides, if I admit any of this aloud, they’ll all think I've gone soft.
So what I do is, without telling anybody, I buy presents for strangers. I've found a couple of great places that collect toys for kids who are in shelters and stuff like that. No, I don't get to see their faces when they get the presents on Christmas morning, but it's pretty cool anyway and it doesn't cost all that much. And yeah, it makes me feel better about the whole Christmas thing.
But don’t you dare tell a soul about this! Seriously. I have a reputation to protect.
As part of Killer Characters’ Seasons Readings giveaway, Sparkle and Jacklyn are giving away a signed Piece of Cake mystery. Choose any one of the four books already in print. To be eligible, just comment below and leave your e-mail address so Jacklyn can contact you!
Jacklyn Brady lives on the Gulf Coast and writes the Piece of Cake Mystery series which is set in New Orleans and features cake artist and trained pastry chef, Rita Lucero. The Cakes of Wrath, book #4 in the Piece of Cake Mystery Series, is available now!
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photo credit 1: kevin dooley via photopin cc
photo credit 2: Wysz via photopin cc