Holidays · Working on Me

A Different Christmas; A Different Me

It’s my post-Christmas ritual. Almost as soon as the gifts are unwrapped, I’m ready to get rid of everything. I want to pull down the decorations and pack away the lights. I want to strip our giant tree bare and literally kick it to the curb. I want all of Christmas gone! Only here we are … December 30th … and I haven’t touched a single decoration. The tree is still lit; the mantle’s still merry. I haven’t even brought the Christmas totes in from the garage, and I’m not even worried about it a bit.

Am I lazy? Have I gone crazy? Or is this yet another lovely outcome of our simpler Christmas?

See I kind of lose track of time while my kids are on break from school. We have a lot of pajama days, stay up late, and sleep in later because … well, we’re on break.

Buuuut, I also usually make “goals” for our breaks. We’ll each sew something from a pattern. Everyone choose a meal to cook with mom. Let’s make a craft together or buy a new bookshelf to assemble or sew new curtains for every window in the house! Of course by the end of our breaks, I am exhausted even though half of those projects never happened and frustrated because the other half are nowhere near finished and sitting on a shelf somewhere now collecting dust.

I also make a huge production of taking down every piece of tinsel and every string of lights and meticulously storing them in bins. It’s an hours long production that I micromanage until no one wants to help. I feel “good” when this one thing is just done. Exhausted. Stressed out. Confused by how much crap I own, but somehow … good?

It’s never made sense to me.

This year my plans for Christmas break included play dates for Alli, pajamas, eating leftovers, and pajamas, and let me tell you, I have accomplished every single one!

We’ve slept and relaxed. We’ve played and enjoyed each other, and we’ve stayed in our PJ’s for days at a time. It’s been bliss!

But …

A Christmas tree still up FIVE days after Christmas Couldn't be!!!

That’s not Christmas Eve, folks. It’s about 15 minutes ago.

I haven’t even touched my tree, and it hasn’t bothered me at all.

I think I know why.

So many years my house was crazy and unmanageable. So many holidays I was exhausted long before Christmas arrived. So often I had to push the clutter aside to even get those decorations UP that packing them away neatly really seemed like I was accomplishing something. Only I wasn’t really. I wasn’t making any new headway in the clutter of my home. I was only pushing a little bit of it back to the garage.

This year is different.

This year I’ve made such strides in getting rid of the excess in my home that keeping the holiday pretties out for just a while longer doesn’t seem so bad. I don’t need to “accomplish” that because in 2015 I’ve already accomplished so much.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ll be taking that tree down soon and packing it all up tight until next year, but this year I’m seeing that it wasn’t just my Christmas that was “different.” The real difference is me.

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