How I simplified Christmas and Enjoyed it More

Christmas Tree

Lesson from a year of COVID
We are nearing the end of the most unusual year’s of my life. I have learned so much this year, some good things, some not so good things. One of the favorite things I’ve learned this year has been a Christmas lesson that seems to working for me. I thought I would share it with you.

I am only doing the parts I enjoy
When I started planning Christmas this year, I told myself that I was only going to do the parts that I enjoyed. I told myself that because I started to feel a little overwhelmed planning a COVID Christmas and after I told myself that it was going to be OK because I was only going to do the parts of Christmas that I enjoy, I stopped feeling anxiety or stress. When I did feel anxiety or stress I just stopped, breathed and remembered. I am only doing the parts of Christmas I enjoy.  Fortunately I enjoy almost all of it.

I had to start thinking about what parts made Christmas fun for me:

  • I love decorating the tree
  • I love sitting and looking at the lights on the tree
  • I love being a secret Santa
    I love giving gifts to my family
  • I love music
  • I love advent
  • I love Christmas smells
  • I love my Christmas bed – especially the snuggly sheets
  • I love that my phone cover matches my sheets
  • I love Christmas pajamas
  • I love the feeling of being connected
  • I love time to worship
  • I love lights and candles
  • I love the food but not too much of it
  • I love being with people
  • I love having a book to read on Christmas Day

I didn’t have a plan this year. Nothing was mapped out day by day and no lists to check off. I did start  thinking about Christmas right after Thanksgiving and just started doing the things I enjoyed.  The results have been amazing!

It’s The Best Christmas Ever
I have done more Christmas activities than I ever have. I’ve been able to relax in my home that is decorated to delight me, Christmas gifts are bought, mailed or delivered from Target and Amazon. I’ve sent cards and small gifts to good friends and my sisters. I have simmering spices on the stove that makes the whole house smell good, I’ve decorated gingerbread houses, created an advent playlist of songs that I play almost every day. I’ve had time to do Ali Edward December daily scrapbook. I’ve enjoyed Christmas movies. I participate in an online group of friends celebrating advent. I enjoy doing things with my daughter, grandson and husband when they want to participate. I am in a good mood, I have plenty of energy – and Christmas melt downs have been minimal. I am going to admit there were a few tears shed over not being able to have friends or family over. Even with a nasty sinus infection and 2x weekly physical therapy, It might just be the best Christmas ever.

I Don’t Like Doing Dishes on Christmas
What happened? I just decided that I was only going to do the parts that I love – and I am enjoying every minute of it.  Since I wasn’t doing it to please someone else or some imaginary perfect ideal, I discovered that the only parts I don’t really like are the cooking and cleaning up the last few days of Christmas. To keep it simple the four people in our house are each contributing a part of the Christmas Eve meal. For Christmas Day we ordered dinner from a local restaurant. No hours in the kitchen or clean-up at all.

Lessons learned
I love celebrating Christmas, especially when I only have to do the parts I love.


It’s Never Too Late…

It's Never Too Late Book Group

This summer I started reading Julia Cameron’s books – starting with her first book called “The Artist’s Way”. I loved her suggestions to help clear your mind – Morning pages, Artist Dates, Creative Walks. By the time I got to “It’s Never Too Late to Begin Again”, I was hooked on the tools that she uses to uncover creativity. She added a new tool in this book called the Memoir, which might be my favorite tool of all. It was so exciting to learn and use the tools that from this book that I decided to create a book group where we all learn the tools and try them and then get together to share what we’ve learned.

Starting in January 2021, you are invited to join my “It’s Never Too Late” book group. This book group will meet weekly on Zoom and is primarily for people who are in the second part of their life, perhaps approaching retirement age and wondering what to do next, especially since it looks like we are still going to be spending a lot of time at home over the upcoming months. This book will help uncover creativity that we never knew we had before.

There are 12 chapters in the book and each week we will discuss a new chapter. Chapters touch on themes including Wonder, Freedom, Connection, Purpose, Joy, Adventure, Faith and more. There are weekly assignments to complete and each week group members will have opportunities to hear what others have discovered about themselves and share what they have learned.

The “It’s Never Too Late” book group is $59 and includes the price of the book, which will be mailed right after sign up. Every week will bring discovery, laughter and new friends. Class size is limited to 10 people so members can truly get to know others in the group. Members will find themselves looking forward to the group meeting as a time to have fun with the other women in similar stages of life. Even for those that may feel they are too shy to share and don’t like to talk in Zoom meetings – I promise this Zoom meeting will change your mind.

Click Here to join my “It’s Never Too Late” book group.

Still have questions? Click “CONTACT ME” in the top right corner of this blog to email me, and I will get back to you.