We spend so much time working our selves up for the perfect Christmas and when it doesn’t live up to our expectations, it is such a disappointment. Why isn’t my Christmas like the Osmond Christmas I used to dream of when I was a child. The fire crackling, everyone singing carols by the piano, people kissing under the mistletoe, children starring out the window anticipating Santa, and the warmth and love of family. After all the preparation, the shopping, and the cooking, as the Eve approached, Hannah began coughing. She grew a fever and as this news spread among my invitees, the guests began to cancel. By Christmas Eve, my party was dead, Hannah was in bed, and four pounds of shrimp cocktail sat lonely on my kitchen island. By Christmas morning, I too was in bed, sick with my daughter, so miserable I thought I was going to die. A virus, flu, or the bah-hum bug, hit our home hard. There would be no Christmas cheer. No figgy pudding. No joy. It was the Christmas that almost was. We are just starting to recover now. And we have been blessed by a beautiful blizzard, and Santa somehow managed to arrange the gifts under the tree. So two days later, we have our own snowy, make-shift Christmas Monday morning. Just another day in paradise. Our own, crazy, dysfunctional, paradise.