Last year for whatever reason Christmas caught us by surprise. We did almost nothing to prepare for the season, then flew down to Texas and had an amazing, huge, family celebration, after which we ended up coming back home, decorating the house and trying to keep the spirit well past the new year to make up for lost time.
This year I am determined to do a better job. Christmas is such a special time of year and whether we try to shape them or not, memories are made this season. So in that spirit, I took some inspiration from Jordan, who puts together an advent calendar of Christmas activities for her family to do each day leading up to Christmas. Some activities are simple like listening to Christmas songs, and others can require more planning, like hosting a Christmas cookie decorating party, but the idea is to do something each day that reminds us that Christmas is around the corner.
For our list, some of the ideas get repeated a few times like reading Christmas books or walking around the neighborhood to see Christmas lights. Some of them require a little more effort and thoughtfulness on our part, like donating blankets to those who need them, or making a meal for a neighbor. Some special activities are borrowed from our childhood memories, and a few of our activities are fun, free events at local museums and arboretums.
If we do everything on the list I’ll be so pumped. If we don’t, it’s no big deal. I’m feeling pretty good though because we’ve already done more than half a dozen activities and it’s only the 5th. (Thank you network television for running Christmas movies all day Saturday while we put up our Christmas tree and decorated gingerbread. And thank you Jim for bringing home that surprise gingerbread decorating kit – I wasn’t planning to decorate any cookies until next weekend.)
It feels good to be ahead. It feels even better to be in the Christmas spirit.