Dec 162015



Dog with stocking


How are things adding up for happier holidays in your home? Here’s a winter math problem that might help you with perspective:

  • Start with a “holiday season” that now apparently begins with Halloween and steamrolls over Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, “year-end reviews” that start the second week of December, Christmas, Solstice, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve, New Year’s Day, Twelfth Night and ….
  • Add multi-media advertising, pop-up boxes on blogs, way too many “buy-my-book-posts,” and a whole lot of ‘named shopping days’ including Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, Cyber Monday and a bunch I haven’t yet absorbed…. (Are these considered “holidays,” too?)
  • Multiply by greeting cards, lights, music, wrapping, cooking and travel…
  • Divide by less sleep, more sugar and  sometimes complicated blended (or  “not so blended”) family structures…
  • Keeping in mind that, in most cases, “x” needs to equal a fixed amount of time, energy and money… and, oh, crap… did you remember to move the elf on the shelf?
  • Answer for “y” — or WHY, how and when did we get so far out of control?

[Tweet “In most cases “x” needs to equal a fixed amount of time, energy and money”]

I like celebration and can sometimes get carried away. I want to do everything. But I’m grateful that the excesses of the season bring me face-to-face with something that I’ve had to re-learn many times: by trying to do everything I may not enjoy anything. That’s right, sometimes the calendars, the get-togethers and my efforts to get the holiday math to add up separate me from the joy I’m trying to reflect.

[Tweet “By trying to do everything we might not enjoy anything.”]

Some friends of mine choose a day to get together for family dinner or gift exchanges; others have done away with cutting trees and dragging them inside. Some will ring in 2016 with aikido cleansing class.  Another family I know has forgone gifts in favor of a creating a fund that lets them get together more often.

I love the freedom and joy that come from making mindful choices about creating time and space for what really matters:  the love and gratitude we have for those with whom we share our lives.

What do you add — or subtract — to allow happier holidays in your life?


  9 Responses to “Adding Up to Happier Holidays”

  1. Entertaining post on reality mixed in with craziness, humor & solid advice: “by trying to do everything I may not enjoy anything.” 🙂 I’ve learned to say no & cut back on the parties & events I will attend.

  2. This is so true! I have put this into practice the last couple of years because I travel for the holiday!

  3. Hi Andrea!
    A few girlfriends and I decided to stop giving each other Christmas gifts and instead pick a day each year to attend either a play or musical concert together. It’s been wonderful bc we get to spend an entire evening with each other enjoying ourselves & each other’s company with no added seasonal stress hanging over our heads!

  4. I love the comment, by trying to do everything, one may miss out.

  5. Love this post Andrea and especially, ” By trying to do everything we might not enjoy anything.” Have a blessed holiday.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>



This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.