The 4 have had a very odd year this year and yet it was not so odd. It was full of ups and downs, arguments and fights followed by impossible achievements. This Christmas like this year was very odd. On paper we had the best Christmas ever!!! It was filled with evening gowns, 100% silk linens and major property acquisitions. There were no real major fights during the Holidays and we had a beautiful Christmas tree. We even have great pictures of the four of us together. On paper everything was perfect. In the years to come that is how I hope to remember everything. Off paper was something the world doesn't see. Everything we did, every present we gave each other, every picture we took, was part of our working Christmas. Yes, even on Christmas Day, we worked.
We each purchased beautiful dresses for each other. They look beautiful and we look beautiful in them but every dress we bought was for an ad campaign. We didn't pick the dresses because we wanted them. We picked the dresses because we needed them. Do we love Ralph Lauren? Yes. Would we have made different purchases if these were actual gifts? Yes. We were so under pressure the entire month of December that we didn't give ourselves a chance to even think. We each got at least 5-8 great gowns and dresses. If it were a holiday shopping spree it would have been a fun one. We would have enjoyed ourselves. Perspective is everything. We were panicked. We wanted a certain look so we didn't go for what we wanted for Christmas. I look at the rack of clothes in our "war room" and they really are amazing but I can't say they were gifts because they weren't. If I could do the moment again I would remove the pressure we felt to get things done. I would have noticed sooner that I am in a store with my beautiful mother and my two beautiful sisters shopping for dresses. Next year and the years to follow will be working Christmases, too. I know this because of the type of work we do but I am going to have to learn to change my perspective. A woman in the grocery store was talking to her sister on the phone. I over heard her ask her sister if she wanted to go dress shopping. It was only then that I realized that I had that moment with my sisters already and I missed it! When family works together it is hard sometimes. We are entertainers, event planners and we host guest from around the world. Entertainers never take off for holidays, hospitality never takes off for Holidays. Technically we did not give each other gifts, but we can think of what we did purchase this year as a working gift.
I did however buy silk for each of us. I had been meaning to for years but silk, even on sale, even with a coupon, is expensive. I spent well over $300.00. I think it was closer to $500.00. I should know but I am trying to avoid becoming depressed. So why did I buy silk now? It wasn't for Christmas, although my purchase arrived just before Christmas Eve. I bought it because I am trying my best to avoid a major problem with our hair. Yea, I know just get a regular satin pillow case and hair cap. I tried that. I have used that for years. Silk is better. Satin served me well but it was not enough. Satin keeps hair healthy but it doesn't protect as well as silk. Oh and just so you know satin is the type of weave of the fabric it is not fabric. Satin can be any fabric including silk. I also learned that real silk is sold by the weight not thread count. Well, to get back to the topic. Something really bad happened that I don't want to talk about, but the silk was all I could do to help the situation. I one day I will have the money to get them piles and piles of silk for fun.
The property we bought is a historic building. It is a building everyone notices when you drive by and we will make it a place people won't forget. We closed on this building in December which is a great Christmas present for all of us but...this was a lot of work. Several months of stress and more to come. Still this was the best moment we had this Holiday Season. Maybe by New Year's Eve we will take a moment and really celebrate. Again perspective is everything. We need to take just 30 minutes and say wow. Instead we are busy renovating the building and booking guest at our properties and burning the candle at both ends. I want the 4 to see that they are not just working, but achieving great things. I just need them to take in that this is Christmas and though everything we did this year was for work, it is still pretty cool.
We tried to attend family events this year. Last year I did not attend Christmas dinner and missed most of the Holiday Season. This year I really wanted to try and be there with everyone for Christmas. I was looking forward to Aunt Kim's Charity Party. I missed it. I wanted to be on time for Aunt Crystal's Christmas dinner. We were 2 hours late. I knew Aunt Kim's party was going to be amazing. I was still searching for dresses with Mom and my sisters for our company ad at 9:00 PM the evening of my Aunt's Party. I looked like a haggard hobo not a woman looking for dresses for work. I remembered looking at my phone and saying I'm not going to make it. Being creative while collaborating with 3 other women takes time. The pics to Aunt Kim's event were amazing. We were also late for Christmas dinner. Why? Because we had someone book our property on Christmas Day. Our guest arrived in Louisville on Christmas and found they had nowhere to stay. Since we just purchased a new building this was a much needed booking. Mom and Faith worked hard to settle our guest in one of our places. In our family, you dress for Christmas dinner. We did not. We arrived looking well, less than what is expected, but we were there and we had fun.
My husband passed December 13, 2013, Friday the 13th. This year I wanted to decorate on the 13th to change the emotional charge of the day. We haven't decorated since 2012. We did not get a chance to do anything for Christmas on December, 13th this year like I wanted. I was feeling down. I felt like I failed. I was downstairs at 2 am when the doorbell rang. I didn't answer the door because it couldn't be for me and everyone else was asleep. I did not know it was my mother's youngest brother, my uncle. I did not know he brought us a real tree. I went to bed before dawn. I called my mother later that morning and she told me Uncle Wayne left us a tree. The mood at our home had not been good. It was difficult at best. When I came downstairs later that afternoon it smelled like Christmas. Faith who works all day and all night everyday looked happier than she had in months. The tension was leaving our home. We had something that we needed but couldn't get for ourselves left at our door step and it changed everything. My uncle knew what the 13th was and he brought us a tree. My uncle loved Bryan, too. We all did. He was our family. I believe Bryan knew we felt defeated. He knew that we really needed to change that day, so he sent my uncle at 2 am. Thank God! We decorated our tree differently than we normally do but we still love it. That is our first tree in years.
I need to look at my life with new eyes. Days can be a burden or a learning experience. Work can be work or a moment to be spent with others. A beautiful dress is a beautiful dress. Does it matter that I got it for work? Christmas is Christmas even when we work so hard and we don't take notice. Christmas happens. Life happens.