Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Hello Holiday '09

Bad poetry about good things:
No presents this year, just lots of cheer.
I'll see my family, we'll have a beer.
When first we see snow, my eyes will tear.
The mountain is calling: come here, come here!

Crappy Christmas Crafting:
Today I made my first potholder out of fabric loops (thanks Amy M for bringing this project). I somehow missed out on this craft as a child. I think I'll give it to my Mom. :-D

~ Merry Christmas! ~

Although I'm officially "skipping Christmas" this year, I realized today that I've actually been missing Christmas entirely since elementary school.

My fondest Christmas memory is from Bellfork Elementary in Jacksonville, NC. For the Christmas of 1989, our kindergarten class made Santa Claus figures from red construction paper with cotten ball beards. They had long, accordian-folded dangly legs because he was meant to sit on the fireplace mantle and stream over.

I don't remember any of my presents, but I remember being very proud of my Santa.

We made them on the last day before Christmas break (it was still called that when I was a kid), and they were still too wet with Elmer's glue to take home on the bus. I wanted my Santa so badly that my Dad drove me to the school after he got off work to pick him up. Miss Brown, my kindergarten teacher was naturally very surprised to see us, but humored me, as a kindergarten teacher should. I breathlessly drug my Dad up and down the hallway of the school, showing off the sloppily colored Christmas trees and paper chain garlands my classmates and I had made. I was so excited to show him how hard we had worked on our decorations.

That's it, I don't remember anything else from that Christmas. What it was really about, from a five-year-old's perspective, was creating special things and sharing them with the people I love.

The feelings we chase but can't seem to catch in the holiday season: Peace, Love, Warmth, Closeness; these things have nothing to do with how many gifts we receive, or how many obligitory holiday drop-in visits we suffer though. We need to stop feeling like the holiday season is just another thing to check off the to-do list. We need to stop worrying that we'll ruin the holiday by not getting Junior an X-Box, or by forgetting the egg nog, or not making it to every holiday party.

Settle down, step back, and take a look at what we've done. We've taken a time meant for reflection, sharing, and appreciation, and made it into a competition where the best gift-buying, card-sending, tinsle-throwing warrior takes the top prize.

The holiday season should be about the people, and the people are not perfect, but that's why we love them.


greg said...

well said...christmas should be about the people not the presents

Anonymous said...

Very well said. Christmas this year was good, but it definitely isn't special the way it was once. This year all the holidays did for me is withdraw into my own happy place because I can't handle all the people and stress.

~ selina ~ said...

It was great, I can't say that I didn't feel any stress, but it was definitely less than previous years. Plus, I gave my Mom the potholder and she loved it. :-D

Anonymous said...

Personally made gifts are more special to me than spending lots of money.....of course art supplies always make me happy too ;P

Now to a good year- Have Happy New Year you two!