Thursday, December 20, 2012

A Very "Merry" Christmas

I have such grandiose ideas about Christmas. Maybe, in a way, we all do, but I'm 100% sure of my own!

Although I LOVE Fall, the day after Thanksgiving, all of the Fall decor comes down and up goes Christmas! (As soon as I typed the word "Thanksgiving" I realized I forgot to blog about THAT event. I argued with myself for a moment, wondering if I should delete the current blog, go back, blog about Thanksgiving and THEN do this blog...but you know what? That kind of thinking is exactly what this blog entry is about!)

Let me allow you to catch a glimpse into my mind =) Scary, right? HA! When I tell my husband that "I'm just trying to explain to you what's going on in my head", he always puts his hands on his head and tells me,"That's okay, baby, I think that will just overwhelm me." But in THIS case, it's necessary!

I LOVE all things decorated, holiday-ed, event-oriented, etc. It's such fun for me to plan and organize and then carry it all out in a perfect manner...except, no matter how much I plan, it NEVER turns out perfect. And normally, this is a HUGE thorn in my side. I just have no idea.

I have a very vivid memory of the moment it turned Christmas last year. It was literally midnight, and I was in the kitchen, knee-deep in baking, and watching a stupid orange cranberry bundt cake cave in on itself before my eyes. I was literally about to cry, when I realized it was midnight, and I headed for the living room to wish my husband a Merry Christmas. I rounded the corner to see him knee-deep in all the packing materials of a sound bar and speakers for the TV, a gift that he couldn't seem to get working. I crawled through the mess to him, kissed his cheek and wished him a Merry Christmas. He nodded absently, wish me a Merry Christmas, too, and then proceeded to fume about the stupidity of technology...and it all just hit me. Merry freakin' Christmas.

Now, this is much more amusing to me now than it was at the time - we were just laughing about that night yesterday, as a matter of fact! But the thing is, I remember how frustrated I was, and this Christmas, I determined that I would not allow myself to get to that point again. It simply wasn't worth it.

So I planned. I charted out on the calendar every Christmas event, every day of shopping, decorating, baking, wrapping, Christmas carding, musical-ing, all of it. It was perfect. I knew this would be the most amazing stress-free Christmas there ever was, and I was SO looking forward to it.

And then...I caught the flu.

I missed four days of work. I missed four Christmas parties. I missed a birthday party. I missed a choir rehearsal. I had to cancel two photoshoots. And I was MISERABLE.

And, all of my planning and charting had completely gone to waste!!!

When I finally felt human again and was able to jump back in, I was behind on EVERYTHING.

In the midst of it all, as I was talking to a client on the phone, he ended our conversation by wishing me a very Merry Christmas...and it was all I could do to not respond with a snarky comment.

It was then that I realized I wasn't being very..."merry". And that was the LAST thing I had wanted.

So, honestly, through no choice of my own, I decided that this Christmas would just not be Pinterest-Perfect. At first, I was pretty upset about it, and then I realized that, if I had to give up my sanity in order to have the perfect Christmas, then it just wasn't worth it.

Yes, I'm still behind at work. But I'm not going to work on any of my given days off over Christmas to fix that. I will catch up when I catch up.

Sure, the baking was late getting done, but it still got done...and it is going out without any flu germs attached to it =)

Of course, the presents aren't finished being wrapped, but, let's face it, the cat will probably mutilate them once they get under the tree anyway, so who cares?

And you know what? Not ALL of the food I take to remaining events is going to be beautifully made from scratch. Some will probably be a freezer item that I threw on a sheet and baked in the oven five minutes before leaving for the event. And that's okay. Because I'd rather spend my time with family and friends making memories than spending my time stressing out over perfection in the kitchen.

So I think the key to a Very "Merry" Christmas is not planning and much as I would like to think it is and as much as, yes, I have already started planning for next year! Ha!

But honestly, I think the key is thankfulness and time. Thankfulness for all that we've been blessed with, and time to share it with others. And a clear picture of Who gave us all these things we're blessed with in the first place.

May your Christmas be a Very "Merry" Christmas...whether or not it's perfection!