Christmas company

By the time you read this, the invasion will have landed, secured the
premises and taken over the food supply. But having survived our
Thanksgiving skirmish, I am prepared to be whittled down to size by a
petite 3-year-old; overwhelmed with the cuteness of a charming nearly
2-year old; and forced to produce my best bib and tucker.
My son, his wife and three little ones are coming for Christmas.
During our Thanksgiving visit my granddaughter tipped her head way back
to look up at me and asked, “Why are you a giant?”
What? Me a giant? I am above average for a woman … but, a giant?
“Am I a giant?”
“Yes,” she asserted, grinned and asked me further, “why do you wear
giant clothes?”
Still considering the original question I asked, “Is your uncle Nate a
giant?” My youngest son is a taller than me.
“Is your uncle Mert a giant?” He towers above her father.
“But, I’m a giant?”
“Yeah,” she grinned at me. “You wear giant clothes.”
Well, compared to her petite mother, who can walk under my out-stretched
arm and is many sizes smaller than me, I am a giant. A VERY BIG giant.
We talked about “Jack and the Beanstalk,” ended our conversation and
then “the giant” and the very little girl went for a quiet walk
together. This visit I am prepared to be a giant. I have been practicing
my giant talk, “Fee, fi, fo fum.”
Her little brother is too little and caught up in his own world to
realize he captured the heart of his giant of a grandmother. All he did
was walk around the room gathering up toys and books to put away in the
toy box. As he worked he sang, in his slightly off-key voice, “Pi’ up,
pi’ up, Ev’ry bo’y pi’ up.” (translated, it is the Pick-Up song which
commends everybody to pick up.)
When the 2-year old began singing, we scattered around the house
cleaning up the clutter that inevitably comes when our families
converge. I picked up his 4-month-old sister who was laying there
cluttering up her baby bed.
His poppa prepared the table for our formal holiday meal. He spread the
table with a white cloth and laid it with the “high, out-of-reach”
matching dishes reserved for company meals. As he finished I was wiping
my hands on a terry cloth bib. The pre-schooler said, “I want to wear a
bib,” looking at the terrycloth in my hands. I snapped it around her
My son suddenly announced, “let’s dress for dinner.” His unprepared
brothers robbed his closet of ties and shirts, ironing them as needed.
My husband was handed a paisley tie to wear with his paisley shirt.
I had no dress-up clothes and as a giant, nothing in his petite wife’s
closet fit me. My red blouse, blue jeans and a big smile had to do. The
pre-schooler wore a slightly used terry cloth bib over a clean shirt.
For Christmas I have plenty to wear if we “dress-up.” I have a whole
closet full of giant clothes to coordinate with my smile. As I said, I
am prepared for the onslaught.
(Joan Hershberger is a reporter at the News-Times.)