I must confess, I decorate for Christmas BEFORE Thanksgiving. Yes, I am ONE OF THOSE. The reindeer are out. The Santa Clauses are out. Everything is out of the closet.
No longer do I feel the overwhelming need to explain in the hopes of forgiveness. Indeed, unless you are paying my mortgage (and since Clemson was kind enough to send the Spring semester tuition bill this week, do feel free to contribute), truly - AIN'T NONE OF YOUR BEESWAX.
Despite saying that, and because it makes for a more lengthy blog, I will explain how I came to this state. Though part of me is explaining because writing the blog is more appealing then figuring out how to decorate the buffet in the dining room this year.
We have only eaten Thanksgiving dinner at our own home once in the twenty-four years we have been together. And we have lived within the confines of a one day trip to and from family, over the hills, and through the woods, exactly never. So every trip for Thanksgiving has consisted of at least half a day in the car going, and another half a day trip coming home. To say the sleeping arrangements have not been very comfortable would be an understatement, and in that statement let me say, that was true on both sides of the family - mine, and his.
Now - imagine a woman trying valiantly to imitate those skinny models they hire for the holiday commercials. The ones who are SUPPOSED to look like a wife and mother. I smile (too brightly), and announce after a long trip, "Yeah! Time to put up our tree, and decorations. How exciting!" Let me just give a few very common responses:
"Do we have to?"
"Can't you do it without us? We don't know where you want that stuff."
"You know, I think the house looks fine without it."
"My stomach doesn't feel good."
"How long is this gonna take?"
I could go on - but many of you have heard the same. Those who haven't, y'all probably don't feel like you need a Valium after watching holiday commercials.
Many years ago, I stumbled upon putting everything up before we ever left. No one was burned out yet or exhausted. We had more time to enjoy it. Sort of like wearing your wedding dress for more then just the ceremony. We would come home, plug in the lights, and watch football. We still wait to take it down after New Year's. But that's what works for us. Even now that we no longer have so many places to go for Thanksgiving, still putting it up. I love football, I want to watch it, too.
And one more point about those endless holiday commercials with the perfect families - THOSE PEOPLE AIN'T RELATED TO EACH OTHER. I guarantee you that each one of those actors has some bat crap crazy relations, too.
And that gets me to the point of the blog - the holidays shouldn't be so dang stressful. If you want to decorate now - do it. If you want to eat Chinese, and watch Netflix - do it. If you want to say Happy Holidays and not Merry Christmas - do it. Each family should be able to do what works for them. The rest of us should chill, and not focus on criticizing such simple actions. Not when Paris is attacked, and Brussels is forced to lock itself up.
So from me to all of you - Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Kwanzaa, y'all be blessed.