It's all the rage, Holiday Stress. Overbooking, overdoing, making the world's longest to-do lists, all things that have to get done-now or better yet, yesterday. Why, I ask? It all came to me during a conversation today that holiday stress is what you make of it. My goodness, I knew December 25th would arrive sooner than later. We all know. I ordered presents online a bit earlier, so I didn't have to worry about shipping time. I browsed catalogs and some local toy stores, feeling out unique gifts, trying my darndest to avoid the ill-fated made in china.
It's funny, I can sit and joke about holiday stress, when I don't even have a Christmas Tree up in my home. Yep, it's December 15th, and nope, no tree. I've introduced a new obstacle in acquiring a tree, I've decided we need to go artificial. The fake trees, with the pine cones, are just so cute. I won't even go into where the trees are made and how they've been know to contain lead. Yes, better to buy American Fake Trees, but for that you have to order on line, and for that you need foresight. Not after-the-fact, Christmas is in 10 days, buy American.
After giving the whole tree thing some thought, I realized, we haven't had a beautiful fresh tree in years, it's totally hit or miss. And then there's the needles, they get everywhere, and our last few trees, haven't sipped a drop of water. Just last year, I went to bed one night to a fresh green tree and the next morning it looked as if it had been plucked out of the Sahara, brown, droopy, and very sad. Most years, my tree sits on the side of my house until about July, even thought we have tree recycling about 1/2 mile away. I'm about the convenience, I'll enjoy my friends real trees. Even my mood about the tree has turned lackadaisical.
See, no holiday stress.
I'm hosting a cookie swap in a few days, in which I need to cook about 10 dozen cookies, aah, no problem. Don't be surprised if I don't get to a post on Tuesday, for i'll be in the midst of a kitchen frenzy. I know the women coming by that night aren't coming to check to see how clean my floors are or if I Windexed my windows recently. They are coming by to take a load off, isn't that what we all need this time of year?
I believe in my heart of hearts, that right now, is a wonderful time to slow down. To reflect, to gather those around you that warm you from the inside. Let someone else buy the perfect present or wait in line for days at the post office, if that's what keeps them in the holiday groove. I feel grateful, my friends want some time to laugh with me, I am thrilled to partake in some holiday food indulgences, I am thrilled our family we be laying low at home, and I am thrilled that I don't need to play into the stress.
Tradition is what you make it, give yourself a break, make it a tradition.