The Year I Completely Blew Off Hanukkah

And there’s no making up for it since the Miracle that was Thanksgivukkah won’t happen again for almost 8,000 years.

Talk about blowing it as a blogger.

But I just wasn’t feeling it this year.

The whole Expat-Thanksgiving-lack of family-hard to get a turkey challenge, combined with Hanukkah falling so early it was November and not December kicked my butt.  Then the kids had most of Thanksgiving week off and my husband couldn’t take vacation days and well….

Like I said, I wasn’t feeling it.

So much so I didn’t even pull out the Hanukkah bins.  No popsicle stick Stars of David from preschool to decorate the apartment, no nuts glued onto wood menorahs covered in wax to light each night.  Nothing.  I was like the Hanukkah Grinch.

I didn’t even wrap a single gift for The Cuties since our tradition is an experiential gift from the two of us, so this year we took them to see One Direction in concert, which happened a few weeks before Hanukkah even started.

So instead, I packed bathing suits for me and The Cuties and we took off for Guam.  And as the only adult, I had to be the “Fun Parent,” a job usually bestowed upon my husband, and always well-earned.  I didn’t read but a page or two in my book, didn’t sip a fruity drink and didn’t nap on a chaise lounge in the sun.

I did, however, take an archery class with The Cuties, repeatedly go down water slides, and by the last day, finally make it across the suspended walkway on the water, a la Wipeout! {Note to Self: future efforts at being the Fun Parent will be easier if you remember to pack the strap to your strapless bathing suits!}

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We saw Catching Fire within a week of it’s release, without subtitles and for a normal price.  This is a really big deal, in a you have to live in Japan to understand kind of way.  We ate at places like California Pizza Kitchen and The Hard Rock Cafe and we shopped at KMart to buy things like Sensodyne toothpaste and NyQuil.

I am sure I never once thought this would be a vacation I would plan and enjoy ;-)

But all good things must come to an end, so we returned to Tokyo to see the Daddy, whom we missed very much, eat some yummy Japanese food and I made one last ditch effort at finding my Hanukkah Happy and so I cooked some latkes.

And like the Miracle of Hanukkah itself, there in the bottom of the Rubbermaid bin I was able to dig out exactly enough candles to light our menorah for one night.

And as I was cleaning up and doing the dishes I turned and got to see my very favorite part of the holiday ~ that moment when the candles have burned down all the way and you just see flames in the menorah and they quietly burn out.

Next year Hanukkah is right in the middle of December.

And I’m already feeling a little more genki about it.

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3 Responses to The Year I Completely Blew Off Hanukkah

  1. Tokyo Jinja says:

    I absolutely loved this post. I think you got the true spirit of the holiday. Like you, I blew it off this year too – ditching my family for friends in HK – and I’m already thinking about how I can do a better job next year!

  2. Shelli says:

    Sounds like a great Chanukah was really had by you and the girls–too bad your husband missed it.

  3. Suzanne says:

    I was also the Hanukkah grinch. Way to early for me this year! I worked half day on Wed, baked three pies to bring to NJ for Thanksgiving, washed laundry and packed for three out of four… By sundown or should I say by 8 pm, I was in no mood for fun. Lit the candles and literally threw the kids all of their presents since we would be away for most of it. Oh well, there is always next year.. But sounds like you and the girls had a great holiday!

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