The holiday season joyously reunites my family! Although Francis is not entirely a Prodigal Son, he is the one son who moved out of state to seek his fame and fortune. Having his Ph.D. from Cambridge specializing in Human Computer Interaction, he has found a fruitful niche among the computer conglomerates in Silicon Valley, California. He has purchased a modest half-million dollar home, (very much similar to the small ranch style homes back east, only less yard and much costlier.) He married an amazing woman who can DRIVE and for whom his vision impairment is not an issue. They recently had a one of a kind baby; a baby so pure and white and bald that she resembles an Alien. (Ooooops! I didn’t just say that, did I?) The best thing is, he comes home every Christmas!

Preparing for his arrival takes a lot of work. Being somewhat of an advocate for letting dust live out its life where it lay, I spend the month before his arrival cleaning; the usual spots, of course, but also those spots not generally covered in a regular cleaning; washing and waxing the cabinets, washing all of the walls so they look as clean as the day they were painted, cleaning under the soap dish in the bathtub, pulling out every speck of dust hiding under the radiators, and cleaning “his” bedroom so clean that it could be considered a sanitary room for a person undergoing a bone marrow transplant. I’ve added a rocking chair for baby to feed lovingly and comfortably. The sheets with flowers are washed with “spring” fabric softener, giving them a sensational floral scent, perfect for a multi-sensory feel. (Yes, sniff in the scent. It is a happy, welcome home scent!)

The decor of my home is generally early mishmash, but when Francis comes home, the walls are decorated with a multitude of photos of all of our children, hastily put together from photos from Facebook. (It is something I mean to do all year but never get around to doing.) The Christmas tree and house decorations are pulled from the bowels of the cellar, decorated and placed in traditional places. Same candles in the window as when Francis was a child, same tree, same decorations including the nativity scene that Francis enjoyed rearranging when he was a child. (He loved to put the donkey in the manger and lay the Wise Men down for a nap after their long hike.) All reminiscent of Christmas’ past.

Hubby, who is generally an excellent cook anyway, also prepares for the special visit. He makes seafood casserole, baked stuffed lobster, “stuffies”, prime rib (sorry fattened calf,) lasagna,and baked ham. For Christmas, we have a traditional turkey dinner, with Marie leading us in saying grace in sign language, joined in by all, (except Francis’ new wife who has not yet caught up in communicating with Marie.) The week is a gastric feast like no other, and poundage is added to us all.

For this one week of Francis’ visit, “normal” life is put aside for a week of conversation, a clean house, a joyful present exchange, visits to nearby sights of interest, (the ski area with the tubing hill, the amazing number of Christmas lights on houses that spend thousands of dollar on decorations, the local breweries, the wild, ravaging waves of the ocean, and, of course, Dave and Buster’s.)

Francis and his little family will be leaving tomorrow and life will be back to normal. I will miss him. And I will be waiting for his return next year!

Do any of you have prodigal children who return for the holiday? How is it for you?


Comments on: "Bring the Fattened Calf; The Prodigal Son Returns" (20)

  1. This year it was a prodigal grandchild who is teaching in a dangerous violence torn country. They surprised me by letting me think he wasn’t coming home, then letting him walk in the door. I wept with joy.

    A grown son teaching in an orphanage for children born HIV positive in Cambodia didn’t get to come home, but four of his friends went to see him and i got to see all their travels and fun, including being part of Christmas for over two hundred children. I so love face book and the internet. The world comes to my desk top.

    Glad you had a lovely Christmas. We rented a cabin in a near-by state park for our gathering of thirty-two, so I just decorated over the dust at home. I’m putting off cleaning until we take the decorations down, but now the goodie for the baddie is that the dust bunnies are covered in glitter. We’ve taken decorating to a whole new level. 🙂

  2. May God Bless You my friend and your whole family…so good to see you and your prodigal son…Happy New Year!!!
    huggs and re-blog on sherrissharing

  3. Reblogged this on Souring With Autism.

  4. I don’t have any children, but my brother is sort of a prodigal son! He moved out when he was 18 to be a hippie and drift around the country. In the past few years he has settled down, bought a house, and has a girlfriend and a baby. They live all the way across the country and we don’t see them much, but they came and stayed with us for 10 days for the holidays! It was so great! My parents and I all took the time off of work and spent the 10 days just playing with the baby, and playing board games and Wii together when the baby was sleeping. They left today… I miss them so much!

  5. What a wonderful holiday time you’ve had. Thanks for bringing us into your life. My prodigal son (i have only one child) is only 12, so I’m still in the thick of it. Having Christmas break has been a lovely break from school and the stress and anxiety it brings for my son. He’s already starting to crank up the anxiety monster and it’s only Saturday. Looking forward to summer break.

  6. Last year all four of our prodigal children came home with their families and we had a noisy but happy holiday. This year, our only daughter arrived for the holidays. She helped decorate the tree and put up all our cards. We had a quiet country Christmas, but I didn’t have to cook a turkey as we were invited to join our eldest son and his family for Christmas dinner in the city. We just put our daughter on the train back to university this morning and we miss her already. Next year there will be a new little clan member to celebrate with on Christmas morning as our youngest son and his wife are expecting a baby in the spring.

  7. Have a blessed new year.

  8. notsoquietmomma said:

    I wish my visit with my prodigal daughter had gone so well….she criticized my parenting every day…argued with all of her siblings(except Lane and Squishy) made sure we were all aware of her rights as a lesbian….and finally insisted on calling the Squishy HER baby….and yes she is only 14. Sadly I couldn’t wait for her to return to her dads. It just breaks my heart.

    However it sounds like YOU had a wonderful visit and I’m so happy for you!

    • Oh, that is so sad…and she is only 14…I have such empathy for you. Perhaps 2015 will be a little better.

      • notsoquietmomma said:

        2014 was better than 2013 we ended 2013 with her pulling some real doozies where she has to go live with her dad to protect the other children. Which is why I took such a ling blogging sabbatical

  9. Hahaha. I do not have children old enough in that way to look forward to having at Christmas. I hope that when they have relocated and have their own families, wherever they will, they will come back home for the holidays because I will be yearning for them to. Christmas and the other holiday seasons here are such family occasions, it is hard not to want family or children to visit. Thanks for sharing.

  10. Yes! Our daughter! Her room was also cleaned from top to bottom. Something she did not do while living with us. 🙂

  11. My children are all scattered around the USA – and rarely do we get all of them home at the same time. This year none of them could be with us on Christmas day. We did Christmas with one daughter and her family the Saturday before and Christmas with one son and his family (7 kids) the next weekend. It was very strange having just my husband and I on Christmas day. But no matter what the date on the calendar, I’m thankful when they come home!

  12. I don’t have any prodigal children cause my only child is 12. She is on the autism spectrum. I’m new to your blog and I look forward to reading more! I also began my own blog discussingmy experience as a parent on the spectrum. I invite you to follow at I’m new at this so bear with me. LOL.

  13. Thanks! I’m really enjoying it!

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