This past holiday season seemed to have come and gone in a flash. I’m trying to wrap my head around the reality of it. Did your holiday fly by too? Read on below to see what we did, didn’t do and why we didn’t get around to much.
Our Holiday 2021
Christmas can be a wonderful time of the year, but you have to make it wonderful. Just having a tree up and doing nothing for the season, wouldn’t cut it. This year, we found ourselves in the latter. We had a tree, and almost zero decorations inside and we didn’t get around to much. Now, I want you to understand that “much” doesn’t necessarily mean frequent outdoor holiday activities, it simply involves things we do at home too as a family.
What Did We Do During the Holidays
Not much at all. It’s not that we didn’t want to but we didn’t get around to it.
– decorate a gingerbread house
– made cookies once
– a neighborhood parade
– Light watch
– Light show
And we did gifts – and this time we didn’t wait until the 9th hour to wrap them either. And no, I didn’t go out daily to buy gifts. For the most part, Amazon was my best friend!
You see, it was our very first Christmas in this new house and new state and while I hoped our family would be able to do some holiday activities together and have somewhat of a less chaotic house by Christmas, it didn’t happen.
Our house was in total disarray which was not necessarily a reflection of the holidays, although, it did add to it. Ever since moving, I’ve been struggling to organize it. For months upon months I’ve been trying to bring order but I was only going around in circles. When it wasn’t orderly by Thanksgiving I was hoping that by Christmas things would be better. The holidays can add so much extra to a house and having an already chaotic house in the midst doesn’t make the situation better. It will only cause more overwhelm.
All our kids have holiday birthdays and days are set-apart for celebrating. So not much was happening in regards to the house. Our holidays were spent celebrating these birthdays this year. In the past, we’ve had our ducks in a row and even had online holiday home tours. By the time the birthdays rolled around, things didn’t feel hectic. But this year, it was different. Stuff all over the place. Although, I did clear off spaces for our kids birthdays but it was all I could get done. I always try to make their birthdays special.
Feelings of Sadness
Every time I think about that huge mess in the house the entire holiday season and how I just couldn’t get it cleaned-up it makes me a little sad. Things were all over the place. My kitchen was in such a condition that I couldn’t even see my way through with cooking. I did cook but most of it was quick. Christmas dinner was OK – it wasn’t the best. And to think I had started to prep early in the week to avoid the all-day in the kitchen sort of thing. It was just OK. You ought to know this about me. When my house is chaotic my mind is also chaotic which then leads to feelings of overwhelm and thoughts of failure and “can’t get it done” on my end. We don’t have extended family or friends close by to do holiday with, so it was just us. All the cooking and everything was on me. I’ve gotten used to it though and it’s usually ok. But this. year proved otherwise.
A Bit of Progress
New Years Day, I laboured all day trying to bring some order into the house. I just couldn’t go on like this. I kept on trying and trying and every time I thought about calling it quits, I pushed forward. That following day, the house looked the cleanest we’d seen it in months. After church and before lunch, the kids and I sat down in a very clean, deluttered kitchen to decorate cookies we’d baked the previous day (that Saturday because I had hoped to be done with cleaning early so we could bake and decorate Christmas cookies). We only got around the to the baking part since I had pre-made the dough earlier in December. Then we decorated them on that Sunday.
Benefits of a Clean House
This first week of January, I washed up breakfast dishes early (as in after breakfast and not at dinner time), I made early dinners, I could see my way through areas I needed to focus on organizing more and also could see my way through the house with homemaking.
While I loved seeing how serene it looked and was thankful to sit in a super clean kitchen and decorate cookies with the kids, it also brought on some emotions. I keep getting thoughts of why couldn’t it be this way during the holidays to help things go smoothly? All the times I wanted to bake and decorate with the kids didn’t happen because we couldn’t find a non-cluttered spot to relax. Why is that happening now after Christmas? The other gingerbread houses I wanted them to decorate, the holiday game night, the pajamas and movie night, the Christmas books reading time with hot cocoa, and most importantly, teaching the kids the Christmas story – non of it happened.
Wait. . . Before you Judge
Think about your holidays and what you did. Did you have a great holiday? Was your house chaotic the entire season? Did you meet with extended family? Did you meet with friends? Think about these for a minute before you give me some reason to be joyful in the midst. In other situations, I have had other moms tell me things like that when in fact things were working out on their end. If you were in my situation how would you feel?
What I know is that every year won’t be the same. And all Holiday traditions may not always get done for one reason or another. Neither does one have to send themselves crazy to keep up with it all. Yet, it certainly makes a difference when your house has some order. You can see what needs to be done and have the place to do it. You will feel less overwhelmed through the season. Your family will have a better version of you.
She looketh well to the ways of her household, and eateth not the bread of idleness (Proverbs 31:27).