Stressed from trying to recreate a perfect holiday?
You’re not alone!
LL Bean catalogue cover perfect christmas, It’s ok to admit it and join in the group. Hi, my name is Barb and every time I see one more perfect image of the perfect holiday, I feel, well, I feel a little….inadequate. I don’t live near anything that resembles this scene from the LL Bean catalogue. I’d like to visit it, of course, but the last time I cut down my own tree, was a long long time ago.
Are you brave enough to admit that you’re one of us, the brave and fearless women who will turn themselves into a nicely wrapped, if not frazzled bow to create holiday memories for the family.
Of course you are! Come on, who doesn’t look at the beautifully photographed holiday catalogues that arrive like Christmas elves every few days starting in late October and think about going out to buy whatever it is they’re selling to help create the “magic”
Gosh, don’t those people look so happy in their sweaters and scarfs sitting on a sleigh with perfectly groomed trees dusted with snow in the background? And then those table settings! They’re just too perfect and aspirational. I don’t see a water spot anywhere or a stain on the table runner that has fresh greenery that’s had all the sap, bird poop and other natural elements steam cleaned.
stressed out over the perfect holiday
And where’s the kids who spill juice on the carpet, or the cranky older relative who’s been wearing the same flannel shirt for years and years, and years? Where are the real people in these catalogues?
Don’t you just love this mom? I saw this in Women’s Day. She’s trying and so are the girls. They’re all in cute matching PJs in front of the tree, but couldn’t get Dad quite on board. At least he’s in the photo.
Do you just love the holidays?
Maybe not so much. Turns out, lots of us overburdened and overworked moms are “living in the moment” which translates to being completely overwhelmed with our regular, daily life, thank you very much. We are not only, not ready for the holidays, we may also be in complete denial that they are going to be here in a few short weeks.
If you’ve been too busy working at a job and then working at your other job (your family) and haven’t had any time to be out and about in the real world which means “the mall,” you may not have noticed but, the holiday decorations are already up. Huh? It’s only October! We’re weeks away from November? I’m just pulling out the Halloween decorations and begging my son to take some precious time away from homework to help me put up the orange lights.
When I think about The Holidays, that means Thanksgiving and turkey and gravy and who is coming? And then, it means Christmas and getting the decorations down from the attic and prepping……Whoa, hold on.
Back to the catalogues
Oh, am I the only one who feels inadequate when I see cover photos evoking a blissfully peaceful family gathering with a crackling fire, happy contented people and mugs of cocoa. Really? When I see those photos, I think about how much work it takes to make those images come to life and actually happen in my own family.
First, you have to have enough milk to make cocoa, and enough chocolate, then are we really out of whipped cream? And, then what about the robes and pajamas? Are they really appropriate for a group setting? A fire? Does that mean I should clean out the grill first, so the old stuff in there doesn’t catch fire and, by the way, how do you open up the flue? That is what it’s called right?
It’s a lot of extra work to make those picture perfect memories
I love having people over and I love this time of year, I really do, I just need to step back and refocus on what’s really important. Yes, picture perfect memories are nice, but I think I’ll skip them this year. I’m going to go for messy and real and fun!
Here’s my strategy, and feel free to weigh in if you have any advice.
• First, I’ll step back and look at the big picture, focusing like a laser on what’s most important, not on the trappings and the appearances.
• For me that means thinking about choices. I’d rather have a fun gathering of friends and family and have take out rather than try to ”set a stage” that looks great but drains all the time and energy for the superficial.
• Wait a second, this is kind of like shifting the focus from planning the perfect wedding to staying true to keeping the focus on what’s important in the relationship.
Give this girl a Peppermint Schnaps
Yes, I want the nice cozy house and the crackling fire, the long walks and the hours of board games with holiday treats, and making some cookies for friends and family. I would like to make the time to reach out to some elderly relatives and chat, not just sign my name to a card.
So this year, I’m resolving in advance to reflect on what has the most meaning and then making the time to make it happen. It might means whale watching, or a pot-luck with friends. It could be volunteering? Hiking? Heading to see the Nutcracker? The sky’s the limit, when you’re not limited by trying to live up to some images from a catalogue.
What are you going to do?
Do you have any extra cocoa or whipped cream?
I saw this Blog: WhereWeGoNow and thought you might also enjoy her tips.