I’ll be the first person to admit that I love the Holidays. I love everything about them. To me, the Holidays start the week of Thanksgiving. The kids get the entire week off, and it’s then that it clicks for me, that the Holidays are upon us. It’s also then, that the stress seems to sneak in a little easier. What side of the family will we spend Thanks giving with? Will the other side be upset? How will we possibly afford Christmas presents for everyone? Really, Christmas music already??
As a mom, trying to teach my kids about the “true” meaning of Thanksgiving and Christmas, it’s disheartening that retail stores have made them (mostly Christmas) so commercialized. Thanksgiving is no longer about being around family and sharing what we’re all thankful for. It’s turned into the day that the Black Friday ads come out. So, while people are sitting around the Thanksgiving table, they’re also strategizing about what Black Friday stores to go hit up first. Don’t get me wrong; we are a single income household, so I’m all about finding good deals. But, the stories that I have heard about fights breaking out over a Tickle Me Elmo (Totally 1999, I know) make me want to puke up my pumpkin pie.
As far as Christmas goes, stores don’t even allow us to get through Halloween, or allow us to be truly thankful, before they have us singing “Deck The Halls”. It just doesn’t feel right to be shopping for Halloween decorations, and just one isle over you can buy a Christmas tree. I understand that all stores have marketing techniques to make money, but that’s not what the Holidays should be about. To me, they should be about relaxation, family, gratitude, love, and last but not least the birth Jesus Christ.
I have decided that this year I want to start a new family tradition. Whether it is volunteering our time at the food bank, donating toys, or sending stockings across seas…I want to start giving to those who are in need. The best part of this will be that my kids will begin to see firsthand that it’s truly all about giving and not receiving.
Can I just encourage you… don’t let the busyness of the Holidays stress you out. Try not to focus on getting the best deal on Black Friday, because if you focus on the true meaning of the Holidays, you’ll realize that you already received the best deal a long, long time ago.