I'm having a hard time believing it's 2015, partially because I worked on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day. The other reason is that we pretty much skipped Christmas this year because of the flu.
It's amazing when you think of all of the preparation that goes into Christmas, a process that takes weeks, and then in one day, it is over. It is usually pretty anti-climatic for kids and adults alike. You think, that's it? And then in the next moment, I have to wait 365 days to do this again?
For kids, it's mostly about waiting to get presents again. For moms, it's about all of the preparation that goes into making the holiday special - the decorating, the shopping, wrapping, party planning. In many ways, the build-up is much more exciting than the main event.
So, this year when my youngest woke up with a fever, an upset stomach and the chills, it was clear that the 22 place settings ready for family and friends were going back into the drawers for next year. We spent the next few days caring for her and cleaning up from our almost-Christmas.
She apologized for "ruining" our Christmas to which we told her a thousand times it wasn't her fault. These things happen. I actually enjoyed the quiet time with her curled up watching movies instead of washing endless dishes from our usual celebration.
In a way, it was once again a sign from the universe that sometimes in life we just need to STOP and be in the moment. While our Christmas came and went without the usual pomp and circumstance, it did come with a lot of much-needed downtime and family time.
I've been uncharacteristically hitting the post-Christmas sales in the past few days purchasing half-priced napkins, candles and ornaments for next year. After all it's just 360 days away, and this is one mom who will be more ready than ever before ...
Amanda is the mom of two, a reporter for WRAL-TV and the author of several books including some on motherhood. Find her here on Mondays.