A few days after Thanksgiving, I walked into a store and was instantly overwhelmed with all things Holiday! Christmas Carols were blaring, ornaments and decorations in all shapes and sizes, as far as the eye could see. Instead of merrily humming along to ‘Jingle Bells’, I felt my panic level rise.
Frantically, I began ticking off items in my mind… order Christmas cards, work on gift list and start actually buying presents, plan holiday party, book babysitters for various events, send in money for all the holiday-related school events, buy outfits for the girls, get to the post office to mail the gifts I have yet to buy and so on…
Don’t get me wrong, I’m a complete sucker for the holidays, especially Christmas. I love all of our family traditions around this holiday. Since becoming a mom, I’ve reveled in experiencing the magic of it all through the eyes of my daughters. Hands down, one of my favorite moments each year is when our tree has been decorated, the presents wrapped, the cards sent, and the four of us sit around with Carols in the background, hot chocolate for the kids (toddies for us) and just… RELAX! We talk about holiday traditions, guess what Santa might bring, anticipate which family members we’ll be seeing and reminisce about Christmases past – it’s always a beautiful moment.
HOWEVER, leading up to that magical moment involves an insane amount of stress at a break-neck pace.
With recent events such as Hurricane Sandy, the financial crisis, and various incidents of illnesses and passings in our extended circle, it becomes more clear each year just how precious each moment is and how unpredictable (and short) life can be. While I hope that 2013 brings nothing but happiness and good things for my loved ones, I have no idea where we’ll all be next Christmas. What will our financial situation be? What will the health of all those around me be? What surprises (good and bad) are in store for us all in the New Year?
My girls are five- and seven-years-old and are true believers in all that goes along with Christmas. I hope that we have several more years of believing in Santa and the Elf on the Shelf, but who knows when that jerk will surface in their class? You know, the one with the older sibling, who has to ruin it for the rest of the kids. This year, I want to make it a point to enjoy and appreciate the good place we’re in and remember the true spirit of what it’s all about.
So, I’m making some Pre-Holiday Resolutions and hope they will all stick (at least for the next few weeks, anyway).
Here it goes:
- I will do my best to not go overboard with gifts this year. Instead, I will focus more on quality than quantity.
- I will ask for help, whether it’s from my husband or the kids or a babysitter. I won’t try to be a Holiday Heroine and take on too much.
- I won’t accept all invitations that come our way. I will commit wisely, to the people and places where we truly want to be.
- I will make it a point to have more unscheduled time, to take in all the holiday delights our city has to offer. I want to take more walks and have more hot chocolate.
- I will exercise and eat as healthy as possible during this season, so that when I do overindulge, I won’t feel as guilty and gross.
- I will be present with my family and friends and focus on where I am, and who I’m with. I will put my iPhone away in the company of others.
- I will make a conscious effort not to be consumed and distracted with all the things that still need to be done.
- I will spend less time taking pictures, trying to capture all the moments. Instead, I will try to be a part of the actual moments themselves.
As much I look forward to that evening in late December when everything is done and we’re sitting around the tree, I want to have many more of those moments along the way. As optimistic as I may sound, I’m also realistic and know that there will be many frazzled moments in the next few weeks, but I’m hoping that if I resolve to a new approach, it might just work…
Wish me luck.
I hope the next few weeks are a little less frantic and a lot more magical, for all!
Prior to becoming a stay at home mom, Mina was an HR Recruiter for years. Now her time is spent happily juggling the demands of two young daughters while trying to expose them to the endless adventures the city has to offer.
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