I think my first exposure to the expression, “It never rains but it pours” came from one of Laura Ingalls Wilder’s books, though I don’t recall which one. It seems to me to be an observable truth; even if it’s not empirically true, it very often feels true. And it feels true right now.

After a flurry of activity – cooking, baking, knitting, reading, socializing – around Thanksgiving, things have been mostly quiet for the last two weeks. I’ve been out of the office a few days for conferences, workshops and a dentist appointment, and have spent most of my off time reading Laura Lippman and eating prepared foods.

Sometime this week I blinked, and realized I’d unwittingly booked up my entire weekend with social engagements, and further committed myself to various cooking and baking projects for work. On top of the books due back at the library before I head home and a pile of holiday gift knitting the cats can’t seem to stop messing with, time seems to be getting tight.

I feel like I’ve been insulated from the stress of the holidays over the last few years, between living at home and being a student. I could be flexible about travel, or not have to travel at all, and therefore didn’t have to worry about shipping presents or stuffing them into my suitcase. While this year I have to work the 23rd and fly home the 24th, in past years I’ve been free and easy once finals were completed, and could knit and bake to my heart’s content, schedule ample time with friends and catch up on my sleep. Admittedly, winter road trips are not without their stresses, but on the whole the last few Christmases were much more relaxed than this one promises to me. It’s a bit cliche to feel the need for a vacation from your vacation, but that seems to be the way of it this year!

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