Today I am making Christmas Magic! I finally feel, after many years, that I understand exactly how to do that for my family.
You see for many years I was under the misconception, much like the Grinch, that Christmas did indeed come from a store. If there were every single thing every one asked for under the tree, and the house was ready for a photo shoot, I had succeeded. There are many happy memories from those years, but there was also a great deal of stress and time spent focusing on things that with hindsight and wisdom truly didn’t matter.
Also, I was in a predicament of my own making in that I didn’t want my kids to experience the insanity I grew up with where the stress to have everything done was sometimes at the expense of holiday spirit. In not wanting them to be forced into elf like servitude to achieve the perfection I did it myself – a sure recipe for resentment and at least one emotional break down per season!
What I have learned over the years from trial and error, and from truly listening to what my family looked forward to for Christmas, is the following:
- knowing the top three things someone truly wants for Christmas is more important than ordering the entire catalog.
- asking what everyone wants for holiday treats and Christmas dinner is so much more satisfying for all than preparing a Martha like feast and not having everyone ooh and ahh, or worse tell you they didn’t like it!
- I cannot share decorating the tree, but I love company so that someone can listen to the stories of our family as told through the ornaments.
- my family doesn’t really care if the house is decorated to rival a department store, but they do mind if I am crazed – I do what I can do with no stress
- I have pared down my Christmas card list to people we are in touch with or want to reach out to over the holidays – I now enjoy writing our messages of love & joy rather than feeling as if I am working on an assembly line
Although these changes may not seem earth shattering, they have made a tremendous difference in our lives. I am so looking forward to being together, to sharing time and to creating new memories. Our home is full of love and laughter and open to friends and family to join us.
Today I am making Christmas Magic – my heart is full!