Slow slow slow the holidays

JacqFischSlowDown.png

If the mention of “holidays” gives you indigestion, then for the love of all things mulled wine and spiked eggnog—please change how you do the holidays.

For so many, the holiday season is one of rushing around like a crazy person from one holiday party to the next, baking cookies, decorating the house, shopping, going to holiday concerts, and getting together with all those people you promised a drink with. Also, where the heck did you hide the motherloving Elf on a shelf?

All the obligations can leave your head spinning.

Pair this with all the rum chadas you're guzzling to add to the spinny head.

Pop into any store right around Halloween, and you'll see hints of Christmas right behind. It's like Santa is waiting behind the witch and Freddy Krueger to start taking names and making a list. The day after Halloween, all the candy is on sale, and Target turns into a Christmas wonderland. Radio stations start playing Christmas music, and Starbucks rolls out their holiday cups.

While everyone is busy complaining that this years’ cup is not holiday-inspired enough, or way too over the top Christmassy, or too religious or whatever. These people probably hate the holidays and have too much time on their hands. Feel bad for them. Or just buy them a caramel brulee with extra whip and get them in the spirit.

Around the middle of November, I look at December’s calendar and see the weekends already filled up. What the heck? How did those obligations get on my calendar already?

We seem to have forgotten what holidays are all about. Since when did I have to become a Pinterest-perfect working mom with a magazine-worthy fireplace and the organic, gluten free, nut free, soy free, dairy free treats to match? I mean, what in the actual fuck?

I actually love the holidays. I’m one of the first to start decorating. The kids start asking for their elf on the shelf in September, and I deck the halls like whoah.

I loved Christmas growing up as a kid too. We were spoiled rotten by our parents and grandparents—my sister and I would wake up to presents piled halfway up the Christmas tree.

We’d have parties, we’d go to parties, and everyone would get drunk and have fun. There’d be lots of laughs, Christmas treats, and they'd even let me have a little wine. What's not to love about that?

Now that I have kids I feel the pressure to give them a perfect Christmas. But when the Christmas lists to Santa are written back in October and list three new video game consoles plus a dirtbike at the top of the wish list—is when I wonder, how the heck am I supposed to do it all and afford it all? And should I even try to do it? I quit.

This is when it all gets to be too much.

Why can’t I give my kid a pair of new pajamas and get on with it? Why does it have to be so grand and over the top? No fun.

Starting this year, I'm going to slow down over the holidays. I'm not going to spend boatloads of money on decorating to impress people. I'm going to drink my wine, put some pines around the house, bust out the Christmas albums and call it a day.

I didn’t send cards this year.

Unless an invitation was a HELL YES, it was a “no thank you.”

It’s the company that matters.

It's not the food, the tree, the color of the ribbons, or the wattage of my twinkle lights. It's the coming together. It’s the company. It's not the perfect Instagram picture of a perfectly clean home. It’s the conversation. It’s the connection. It's all the things you didn't realize that could spark joy until you lay down al the armor, twinkle, and glitter, and let the 70s paneling and patchy grass shine on through.

Starting today, I’ve added this heads-up to my email signature:

Out of office heads-up: December 21-January 6. I’ll be out of my email and enjoying some unplugged, family time. I’ll get back to you in the New Year. Until then, I hope you enjoy some slow-down time too.

Starting this weekend, I’m unplugging. No work, more play. Truth be told you’ll find me writing here and there, but no work as usual.

I hope you enjoy a slow and delightful season and I’ll see you in the New Year!

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