12 Days of Christmas – #1 Elizabeth Ann West

WOOOOOOT! It’s here! It’s Christmas Eve! Yay! 😉

Ok, we’ve had some brilliant stories and posts over these past 12 days. I hope you’ve enjoyed reading them as much as I have enjoyed hosting them. Thank you to everyone who contributed.

I saved the last spot for someone special. Elizabeth is not only one of our brilliant authors over at MWiDP and our fabulous IT guru, but in 2012 we are going to be working on a couple of projects with her. She’s also pretty cool!

Here she is:

Christmas Under Pressure

This is my fifth attempt to write this blog post. I’ve followed the series and I’ve built up all of this pressure on myself to deliver. I’ve got THE Christmas Eve post. The last one…and I’m so afraid to disappoint.

Here’s the problem: I’m not IN to Christmas this year. In my country, the good old US of A, there are two extreme camps. One side looks at Christmas like a sport, with bargains hunted with such ferocity, don’t visit your neighborhood K-mart without pepper spray! On a completely opposite side of the spectrum, are the religious fanatics, who want to throw piety around like it’s 1692 and there’s some witches to burn. How many tiers did you make your birthday cake for Jesus?

This year, I did all of my shopping in one day. I bought a small gift for the in-laws and shipped it to them directly, as our recent move from SC to CT has put a damper on our Christmas fund. My children each had a limit placed on them, and I even traded in my hand held video game player for an extra boost so we could upgrade my stepson’s system.

My husband and I are not exchanging gifts this year, a first. And I don’t care. I’m not upset one bit. This year, my family worried about our future too, too much. My husband applied for an officer program in the Navy and if he didn’t get it, was getting out. He flew to job interviews in places that get eleven feet of snow per year. Let me say that again. Me, a girl raised in southeastern Virginia, where everything shuts down on a forecast of flurries, was going to move to a place where they get ELEVEN feet of snow!

And I would have gone. But thankfully, he made officer and we now live in Connecticut, where they average about twenty inches of snow per year. For the first two year though, it’s a slight pay cut (we’re making the same amount we made in SC, but there’s a high cost of living up here and we are renting out the house we own down south).

The bottom line is my family is healthy and happy. My marriage is in a less stressful season, despite living a little tighter to our budget. I couldn’t ask for more than that. Well I could, but I don’t want it. I’m looking forward to a new year writing another novel or two, and putting on a publisher hat once in awhile. I’m anxious for a brand new chance to make life special, whether it’s reaching out to a reader who wants to read my book but cannot because she is blind so I’m making her an audio book, or teaching my daughter how to spell her name.

This year, I just want a normal, quiet holiday. My family is finally together, without anymore Navy deployments. The lack of emotional drama is one of the best gifts I could ask from Santa Claus. And we’re building new family traditions, such as my parents visiting the weekend before Christmas. What about that extravagant Christmas dinner everyone puts on? The West family is making pizzas.

So Have yourself a Merry Little Christmas. Let your heart be light. From now on our troubles will be out of sight.

If you haven’t seen Meet Me in St. Louis, give it a chance this holiday season. And I look forward to celebrating a new year full of new opportunities with all of you. Merry Christmas!

Thanks Elizabeth! And here’s to 2012!

So, that’s it. We’re done.

All that remains is to wish you and yours a very Merry Christmas and a fantastic New Year. Here’s hoping that 2012 brings us all everything we could wish for and more.


Writer, dreamer, pantser.

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2 comments on “12 Days of Christmas – #1 Elizabeth Ann West
  1. Awe Anne, *huggles* I’m a military brat myself, as is my husband. My dad was in the air force, my father-in-law, the Navy. CT isn’t a bad state. My dad lives there. But, I can understand how it’s not home. (I’m in MD and miss New England, though not as much as I did with I was in CA.)

    I’m sure everything will work out right. Sounds like it’s started to so Cheers to your new road ahead in 2012 Anne!

    :} Cathryn

    • Navy brat here 🙂 I tease my husband that come this March, I will have been a Navy dependent for 30 years. I believe that’s mandatory retirement…. LOL (kidding!)

      But I knew the life i was signing up for, and have 100% made the best of it. This past year was just a season of BIG DECISIONS and that’s stressful for everyone. But we’re on a trek for the next 10 years and since he was picked up Naval Reactors, he comes home every night.

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