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.


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