Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Christmas: Doing it up BIG!

So, the holidays are upon us again. As usual, There are not enough hours in the day or days in the week to get everything done that is neccesary before Christmas day. One of the reasons I'm struggling with this is because I just keep adding to an already impossible list of things to do. Why do I do (over-do) this? That begs the question why do I over-do EVERYTHING? I think that's another blog post in and of itself!

I was daydreaming this morning about how it would feel to pull the 'ol Nancy Reagan and 'just say no' to some of the stuff I am taking on these days. What would happen? The world would stop spinning? Elephants would fall from the sky, perhaps? My kids would be scarred for life? Nope. Of course not. And yet for some reason, around this time of year, silly things seem to take on an urgency and importance that I can't explain. I'll give you an example: Recently I was working with a team of other parents to make a parade float for our community Christmas Parade. Now, those of you who know me are well aware of the fact that I am a bit of a perfectionist (putting it mildly) and that I am very detail-oriented. Well, I took it to a whole new level with this float. On the last day, we were putting up a little wooden cross (which I had naturally blinged-out with glitter) on the back of the train as a finishing touch. One of the dads helping out with the float put it on and when I looked up and saw it, it looked a little off center and not exactly where I would have put it. Now right here is where an ordinary person (who is not afflicted with a bad case of decorating OCD) would have shrugged their shoulders and said "looks fine, let's cross that off the list." But not me. It bugged me and I actually mentioned it (more than once, if I'm honest) to the sweet dad who was working so hard to help us finish! Silly! Really...who cares? Not my finest hour. The good news is that eventually I let it go, the float was a huge success, the kids had a wonderful time hamming it up during the parade and our float won! My only regret is that I chose to let something so minor become such a big deal to me. Even for a moment.

So here's my point. Nobody cares if the garland isn't perfectly symmetrically placed or the Christmas tree has too many ornaments crowded at the bottom (okay...I care but I'm trying to ignore it!) or if you haven't raked all the leaves out of the yard, etc. So many moms that I know are just barely keeping their heads above water between Christmas shopping and baking and school field trips and pajama day and holiday parties and getting the house ready for company (and in my case, Patrick's birthday party) that some of the joy is gone and it all becomes about just checking things off the to-do list.

I am taking a stand right now and saying 'enough'! I resolve to enjoy the rest of the holidays without stressing out over the little things that don't really matter. Not only that, I'm not going to take on any new projects, either. And another thing...I'm going to take more time to count my blessings and give God glory for sending His son to save me.

While I'm at it, I'm going to take a hot bath every night and relax with a good book before bed and I'll take long leisurely walks whenever the mood strikes me and put my feet up the moment I get tired of standing and sing Christmas carols and drink apple cider around the tree every evening and while away the hours in quiet solitude and.....whoa! Where am I? *shakes head* Whew...I got carried away there for a second!

The holidays will always be hectic and I will always go over the top in preparation for Christmas and New Year's Eve. That's what I do. I do it up BIG. Our kids will be little for such a short time and these memories will last a lifetime. Hopefully they will remember how much fun we had and all of the magic and joyful laughter will stay with them as they get older. That is my Christmas wish. Let there be Peace on Earth.
And let it begin with me.

Blessings and Warmest Wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.