Holiday Crazies

I'm probably the odd woman out in the group when it comes to holidays.  I'm not a big holiday person.  That doesn't mean I'm a holiday hater.  It simply means that I chose some years ago that the pre-holiday insanity was, for me, better avoided than embraced.  But that's me, and I don't tell friends or family that they can't enjoy their holiday planning, working and festivities.  Not at all.  In fact, I'll be there early for the celebrating!

The above does not mean that we skip holidays in our family.  It only means that I've been lucky enough to pass on the work and can enjoy the the actual holidays much more.  I'm blessed to have four daughters who love all the hustle and bustle, in spite of full time jobs and families.

When my girls were growing up, I vowed never to make holidays stressful by insisting that, once they were married or on their own, Thanksgiving Day or Christmas Day were mandatory family get-togethers.  While I never experienced the problems caused when families play tug-of-war over who grown children and their children will spend a holiday with, I saw friends and relatives struggle with it to the point of very heated arguments.  Instead of celebrating the holiday by the exact date on the calendar, we get together on a different evening or weekend.  We tried the "dinner at his family early, then dinner with our family later," but it didn't work.  Now we simply set aside a separate time for "us."  Stress is reduced, and there's no hard feelings to deal with, not to mention that the family is together, and that's what's important.

In spite of passing on what I tell myself is the bulk of holiday chores, there are still some things that I haven't managed to escape.  Making the turkey and a traditional cake for Christmas comes to mind.  Of course I still spend time shopping for the gifts I give, but the tree decorating and wrapping have been taken over by my youngest daughter, who, unlike me, enjoys both.  For me, that's what holidays should be.  Enjoyable.  They shouldn't be a time when we beat ourselves up because we ran out of time to do something that would only be missed by us.  Therefore, I now live by two holidays rules

  1. KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid)
  2. Delegate
In spite of all that, I still end up coordinating and reminding the others.  I'm sure they could do it without me.  I believe strongly in traditions and how important they are, but I've also looked back at my own life and realized that traditions constantly adjust to the changes in life.  Don't sweat it, embrace it.

Wishing everyone the happiest, stress-free holidays, filled with love and laughter and joy!


Reese Mobley said...

Good ideas, Rox. I do love the hustle and bustle, but I also enjoy when I have help! My boys are great, but I really miss my daughter. She loved to decorate and shop with me. Thankfully, my sons are dating wonderful young women who are always willing to lend a hand. I feel truly blessed! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.

Pat Davids said...

Love the picture you chose. I also like KISS. Thanks for sharing your tips.

Melissa Robbins said...

Delegating is a great idea. We always drive to Reed's cousins' house for Thanksgiving. Everyone brings a food related item, so my cousin isn't cooking everything.

When I was in college, I would have the entire month of December off. Mom put in charge of all the present wrapping including my own presents! She would hand me a clothes box and say, "Don't open it. It's yours. Can you wrap it?" I didn't mind. I love wrapping presents.