Is this time of year like all the songs say? Happiness and joy fill the air, you spend cool winter nights laughing with loved ones and sharing time. If you are like most people this time of the year makes you question where this imagery even came from. It can seem like an endless blur of obligations, errands, over spending and over indulging. Probably one of the reasons New Year’s resolutions are so popular; we feel the need to cleanse and relax after the hustle and bustle. That is what I used to think about the holidays too. Last year, moved by recent events, my husband and decided Christmas would be different. I wanted to bring happiness, peace and comfort and so did he. We decided no gifts for or from anyone but we did make charitable donations to causes and organizations that meant something to the recipients. We also adopted a child for the holidays from boy and girls club and we gave items on the wish list of Good Mews, the shelter where I volunteer. I have to say for the first time in many years I really felt the holiday spirit.
This year we are doing another slow, giving holiday. We don’t spend every free minute attending holiday parties, because we are not really party people. Instead we are going to see some local theatre, walk and run through Christmas lights and spending time together. Hubby gets his Christmas break from school. Because work is so slowat this time of the year, I usually take off nearly 2 weeks also. It is a great time to reconnect. No gifts again this year, but more charitable giving. This year I will be giving a person clean drinking water on behalf of each of my friends and family. You can find out more at Charity Water. For each $30 donation you provide clean water to one person in the world. What could be a better gift? With our recent switch to vegetarianism I think we have a handle on the usual over indulgences. I will bake some cookies, but not 12 dozen like past years. I want to enjoy the experience. Being more mindful and slowly baking a few cookies to share while listening to my favorite holiday music will make them more special for me and those I share them with. On a side note I don’t have to fear the after Christmas bills and my husband and I can use the money we would have used to buy more stuff we don’t need to finish paying for the trip we are taking to the Bahamas in February.
I hope you all find time for what is truly important this holiday season!