I’ve been fighting the crazy Christmas machine this week. Not the one that jumps out of advertisements. The one that lives inside my head. It tells me that I’ll never ever get away from being in bondage to the Christmas frenzy, no matter what I do.
There are two current lines of thought in my brain about choosing to not do presents this year, neither of them helpful.
Your children are going to hate you one day for this…just give in. Why is everyone is asking what they want Santa to bring them, even the dental hygienist, for crying out loud? Maybe you should just forget it and put everything on your credit card.
The second is even worse, the self-righteous fighter of the Christmas machine:
Shopping is of the devil. I’m surrounded by materialism and greed. The whole world is out. of. control.
From either side of the Christmas curve (or as I’m swinging back and forth), I’m learning that the Christmas season is just hard on mamas, even this mama, which is not easy for me to admit. My own dear mama spent a lot of my Christmas seasons in a bit of a funk (read: in bed with the covers pulled over her head), a state which we always chocked up to her being a grinch. Which just isn’t fair. Now that I experience Christmas as a mama, I know that it is a whole lot harder than the songs make it seem to strike that perfect balance at Christmas. The balance between Christmas joy and Christmas restraint. The balance between enjoying the moment and feeling frazzled, or between trying to survive the moment and feeling guilty for not enjoying it (middle school Christmas band concerts come to mind).
My current effort towards landing somewhere close to joy (and sanity) this Christmas is to keep focusing back on our church’s give away weekend next week. There is so much beautiful-ness going on at our church right now that I cannot even begin to express it here, but everyone has been encouraged to take part and every story I hear is another reminder to me of how much I really do want to celebrate Christmas…the kind that is all about sacrifice and singing and eating and blessing others with my minute presence on this planet.
So here’s our little part.
Cole, Mary Polly and Ben have decided on a water buffalo for Christmas. Maybe even more than one. I attribute this choice solely to Larry the Cucumber, even though they are too cool to watch him anymore.
We’re going to make cupcakes to raise money for our water buffalo. Not just any cupcakes. Really wonderful, homemade-from-secret-recipes-from-my-brilliant-baker-sister cupcakes. Even better, I think that my sister will even be here to assist in the cupcake sale, which will mean that our cupcakes will not just be yummy, they will also be pretty. Details coming soon on when and where you can both do and eat goodness at the same time.
Also, a friend wrote me and told me that someone else is doing what we’re doing for Christmas. That makes me so happy. And it helps me feel just a little weensy bit less crazy. Always a good thing. She was inspired by this video. If you haven’t already seen it, maybe you will be too.