All Hands On Deck…The Halls

For many, the long holiday weekend meant engaging in a beloved Christmas tradition.  No, I don’t mean standing in line before dawn and taking blows to the kidneys to get 1/2 off this year’s must-have toy or gadget (insert gratuitous Tickle-Me-Elmo joke here.)  I’m talking about Decking the Halls.

Everywhere I looked, people had dragged boxes and barrels out of storage and were up on their rooftops draping the house with holly, ivy and enough electric icicles to paralyze the power grid across the length and breadth of this nation.

Not me.

It’s not that I don’t like decorations – I do.  I do.   It’s just that I have a domestic problem with this issue.

Those who know me have heard my story.  You new boys and girls, gather round.  Sit at my feet; there’s plenty of room (Colin, stop shoving Sam.)  Sit still and listen carefully (stop picking your nose, Susie) while I tell…

 

Little Red Hen’s Christmas Tale

Little Red Peg taking care of Christmas business.

Once upon a time,  Little Red Hen lived in a cozy little coop with her happy little family.  It was Christmas time and Little Red Hen thought some decorations would add to their holiday joy.

So she bought some eggnog and cookies, put on her favorite Bing Crosby Christmas CD and settled in for some holiday memory-making

“Who will help me set up the tree?” she asked.

“Not I”, said the rooster.

“Not I”, said the first chickee.

“Not I”, said the second chickee.

“Then I will do it myself,” said Little Red Hen.  And so she did.

Amidst a considerable amount of swearing.  Little Red Hen developed tree burns and little cuts on her wings from wrestling the 9-foot tall, artificial tree out the box, putting it all together and fluffing the scratchy branches.

“Who will help me put all the lights on the tree?” she asked.

“Not I”, said the rooster.

“Not I”, said the first chickee.

“Not I”, said the second chickee.

“Then I will do it myself”, said Little Red Hen.  And so she did.

With nobody to hand the strings of lights to, she was up and down the ladder at least 26 times.  All the lights worked when she tested them, but half of the strands went out as soon as they were all plugged together.

“Who will help me put all the ornaments on the tree?” she asked.

“Not I” said the rooster.

“Not I”, said the first chickee.

“Not I”, said the second chickee.

“If you think I’m doing any more decorating without any help from you selfish, lazy slobs” said Little Red Hen, “you’re crazy!”  She burst into tears and took off for the mall with a squeal of tires.

The rooster and the 2 little chickees ate all the cookies, drank all the eggnog, turned off the Bing Crosby CD and watched Here Comes Honey Boo Boo on TV.

And the half-decorated tree and 3 big boxes full of ornaments are still sitting in the middle of the living room floor to this very day.

The End.

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About pegoleg

R-A-M-B-L-I-N-G-S, Ram...Blin!
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53 Responses to All Hands On Deck…The Halls

  1. Ooh, I can’t wait for the sequel, “The Little Red Hen Takes Passive-Aggressive Revenge On The Other Birds.”

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  2. Oh, you know how I love to gather ’round and hear you weave these spellbinding tales, Little Red Peg! And I think I’m going to use that drawing as my computer’s new wallpaper. Happy holidays to me!

    I managed to not decorate a single thing this year. Jim did all the work, he climbed ladders, strung lights on every inch of our house, fluffed the sad fake Charlie brown tree’s branches… while I sat on my butt and sipped hot cocoa. I have him well-trained.

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  3. dorannrule says:

    I am wordless. Could this be a true story? If it happened to this little red hen, there would never be a tree up for the holidays again, unless the chickees and the rooster did all the work!

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  4. Priceless ( and so identify….and they have the grain in their craw to cackle about “Why are you using the little tree – We want to huge tree with all the stuff – that little tree goes in the apartment…and by the way when are you going to bring it over and fix it?”)
    So going to toss the while wad of outdoor lights out in a big lump on the yard and call it contemporary Christmas.
    Great post.

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  5. Glad to hear I’m not the only one trying to keep alive ye olde holiday tradition of The Holding Down of the Couch. I was starting to feel guilty. Maybe. A bit.
    🙂

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  6. mistyslaws says:

    Here Here Little Red Peg! I have a post all ready to go up tomorrow, but you trumped me with this gem in such a succinct and perfect telling of this tale. Were you by chance at my house this past weekend? Methinks you might have been spying on my family to get inspiration for this post.

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  7. Al says:

    This is what I love about Christmas. It’s that one time of year when everyone puts aside the distraction of the trials and tribulations of everyday life and focuses strictly on family squabbles.

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  8. I love your stories! Also, it’s imagining scenarios like the ones you’ve described that have kept me away from even beginning decorations. I now feel more justified in my reluctance . . . but also resolved to help the grandmas, should they desire to decorate their home this year. (Guilty memories? It’s possible I have one or two . . .)

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  9. robincoyle says:

    “It’s the hap-happiest time of the year!” Chicken Little told me so.

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  10. Audrey says:

    A sad tale, truly. But at least it reads like some of my favorite children’s stories!
    I’m a solo decorator too but I don’t mind so much most of the time. So long as the tall boyfriend reaches the spaces my short wee arms can’t get to. Enjoy a non-stressful Christmas!! 🙂

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  11. The part about Honey Boo-Boo was the part what pissed me off the most. it’s disparaging to the Christmas tale. Heathens. Hmph.

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  12. 7zonesabroad says:

    If you’re interested in Christmas stories, you might wanna check this out: http://7zonesabroad.wordpress.com/2012/11/11/santa-claus-vs-sankt-nikolaus/

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  13. Yup and there’s even less cooperation during the dreaded un-decorating portion of the holiday festivities, which often takes place sometime around, say, April or May…

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  14. I love this story, Peg.
    Guess what? I have a wee-little tree on the piano that I put up last year. Everything got put away last year except that one and YAY me it’s November– I don’t have to set up that one–it’s still there in time–er, early for the season.

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    • pegoleg says:

      Ha ha! I’ll admit I left the nativity scene up on top of the dining room cabinet all year. I figured it wasn’t that I was lazy, I just wanted to remind myself of Jesus’ birth all year long. Right? Right?

      Like

  15. Snoring Dog Studio says:

    Have you considered getting them all drunk before you ask for help? Granted, the outcome might be less than Martha Stewart worthy, but at least the stuff would be out of their boxes. Or, you could pile all their gifts into a hefty bag and tell them you’re heading to the city dump.

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  16. Go Jules Go says:

    I’m lucky if I can get Peppermeister to put the tree in the stand for me. This is why my eggnog has extra kick.

    I’m with Deb – I love your stories!

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    • pegoleg says:

      I have these Lifetime Movies scenarios of how these Christmas events are supposed to play out, and when real life is less, shall we say, scenic…I get disappointed. Maybe I just need more realistic expectations.

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  17. Angie Z. says:

    This makes me laugh more because my mom constantly used the “Well, I guess just like the Little Red Hen, I’ll do this all by myself…” guilt trip on us when I was a kid. Ha! She was always good for a laugh, that biddy.

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  18. And this is why I haven’t decorated in four years.

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    • pegoleg says:

      I brought a 2-foot wooden tree up from the basement last night and my husband stuck it on a chair so the dog wouldn’t chew on it. We have a 6 month old puppy, so decorating might be a moot point after all.

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  19. When my youngest was 14 (he is 33 now) he said to me, “mom why do you put up a tree, decorate the house inside and out and cause you and us stress?” I stared at him fish eyed thinking it was a trick question but responded in dulcet tones, “I do it for you honey.”

    As he was dragging the last of the boxes down from the attic, “Mom, every year we go to Grandma’s her house is decorated too. Then we come home and we have to take everything down and we have to put everything away. You don’t help with that you know.”

    I stared again, “Yes, well I decorate and it is you and your brothers job to put everything away.”

    He and his brother looked at me, “Mom, why not just not decorate at all? We don’t really care.”

    So that year, we put up the antique manger scene from the other Grandmother. Took all the lights (inside and out) all the other decorations still in the boxes and donated them. We lived at the time in a place that dictated the minimum you had to decorate the outside as we were on the Christmas tour, I paid to have it put up and taken down.

    I have never decorated, ever again.

    I love your story, Peg.

    Like

    • pegoleg says:

      Wow – I have a lot of admiration for you. It takes nerve to not decorate. The fact is that I LIKE the decorations, once they’re up. I just find the thought of putting them up and taking them down is exhausting.

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      • Nerve, nah. My kids were right. We didn’t spend the holidays at home. They always had to take everything down due to my travel schedule and it was a great deal of effort, lots of stress. We were all happier after this.

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  20. Tori Nelson says:

    Ha! This is where my sloppy decorating skills and my husband’s twitching OCD eye comes in handy. He can’t stand to put me in charge of the Christmas lights because something, something! will be out of order. God bless his anal retentive soul.

    Like

  21. Dana says:

    You have to take your cues from me, Peg, and leave your Christmas tree up YEAR ROUND. That way, there’s no agony every December. (Granted, we just have a tiny, 2 ft tree that functions more as a bedside lamp than anything. I don’t know if it would work as well with a 9 ft version.)

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  22. I love look at decorations, but I hate actually doing it. Probably because I end up doing all of it.

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  23. hollybernabe says:

    Sounds about right…

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  24. Pingback: peep | Peg-o-Leg's Ramblings

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