Chasing Contentment

Tuesday, November 1

Now that it's November and a mere three weeks from Thanksgiving, I can start doing some holiday planning. I'm an organizer, a planner, and I love lists.

I also love the holidays... well, I love the Christmas holiday season. Thanksgiving, in my opinion, is good only as a portal to Christmas (interestingly enough, it's my mother's very favorite holiday). Eat your turkey, let's put the tree up! That's my Turkey Day motto when we spend Thanksgiving Day at home.

I didn't always enjoy the holidays, though. We spent too many years driving to this family member's house and then to that family member's house and being tired and grumpy and not nearly enough time just being together and enjoying one another and the gifts God has given us. Once I physically and mentally stopped and began to determine what it was that I wanted out of the holidays and began acting upon those desires, the holiday season came alive to me.

When Griff was first born, we determined that we wanted to spend Christmas Eve at the service at our church and that we wanted him to spend Christmas morning in his own home. All of our family members have a standing invitation to be there with us. Now, it was really hard that first year when it was just the three of us. But now, it's a delight.

We've had friends join us for holiday meals, family come for visits. We've eaten omlets for the holiday feast, had potlucks with college students stranded for the holidays, and we've played in our jammies for day-long fests. In short, we've created the perfect holidays for ourselves, ever-changing as our family changes.
Last year, a friend was talking about how overwhelmed she felt by all that had to happen for the holidays, and I offered to give her suggestions on how to make her holidays not quite so overwhelming, and I wrote out a plan for her. She emailed it back to me a few days ago, and I was astounded at just how good it was (not to brag) and at how I loved the sentiments in it.

So I can remember it always (and use it myself year after year), I'm going to post parts of it here. It'll be Chel's Holiday Plan. My goodness, if I could find a job that let me do holiday and gift planning for just everyone, I think that would be perfect!

[  posted by Chel on Tuesday, November 01, 2005  ]


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