Hear that? that is the silence that envelopes the house after all the kids and the grandbabies have gone home. Christmas magic has subsided…and the gifts have gone home with them ( except for the kitchen and the air hockey, which unapologetically still stand guard in my living room) and most of the wrapping paper, stray beer cans and cookie crumbs have been gathered up. Its a good kind of quiet, almost anticipatory. Because they will, mercifully, be back, and soon. Someone will need to be babysat, someone will need to borrow a pot with a lid or a log splitter, someone will need to talk or eat or have something sewn…and they will all come crashing back in, arms flying, laughter erupting….but for right now, its quiet..