Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Something Missing

So have you noticed that something has been missing here these days? Perhaps a little red and green?

I've been following what's going on in "Blogville" these days, pretty Advent calendars, sparkling Christmas decorations, tasty baked treats, and fun and creative projects for the "most wonderful time of the year"... and then I stop and think a
bout my last five posts. Tja, and thinking about it, one would probably never even notice a color or season change.

Putting aside the fact that I have been a rollercoaster ride of being "under the weather" for the last months, there is a part of me inwardly that has said enough is enough. The past several years for me have been a gradual, but significant scaling down. Mind you, I come from the land of explode your credit card until the mountain of debt surpasses the mountain of toys that are given to happy little boys and girls. A place where, despite the fact that working moms are stretched on every side, there is still the pressure to provide the magic... the whole atmosphere, the candles, the presents, the cookies, the perfectly decorated home, the things life-time memories are made of. Each year I evaluate what I am doing that pertains to Christmas and if it actually makes sense. Don't get me wrong... I love to decorate, I love to make things pretty, I love to add that extra added touch, I love it when I find that present that makes that someone special squeal with delight... who doesn't? But I've been asking myself at what "cost" am I doing these things? Am I getting so caught up in the doing, the buying, the running, the wrapping, the decorating, the stress, the self-inflicted expectations that I have of myself that I totally miss it... miss Christmas? Am I overlooking the needy, the hungry, the hurting, just to run in the mad rat race?

But my motto for this season has been... keep it simple. The little guy actually gets only a few things for his second Christmas. Most of the gifts that I am giving are handmade. There will be food dropped off this week at the food bank. And a simple manger will be just about the only decoration that will be put out for the holidays... but isn't that the simple and humble display of love that should take the spotlight of Christmas?


5 comments:

  1. Du sprichst mir aus dem Herzen - don't know what this is in English but I'm sure you'll understand. In love to give away presents and have everything nicely decorated but when I start to shout at my children, can't wait at the till for five minutes etc. I have to pull the brake. I also did this years ago because I felt that I'm missing the actual point of Christmas and never wanted my children to remember this as the most hectic time of the year. "Simple" gives you time to concentrate on the important values you want to pass on and show other people that love has come into our world 2000 years ago and we can pass this love on...uups very long comment! Have a really nice Christmas with your family, Simone

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  2. Simone, Ja, natürlich verstehe ich. Sometimes in our home, as I am sure as well as yours, we speak what I like to call "Denglish" (Deutsch/English) es ist oft total gemischt bei uns, and whichever language can express it best is what we use.

    I'm pleased that the stress of the holiday is not pushing me this year... I'm rather quite enjoying it.

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  3. I totally agree! My boys only got a couple of gift this year and they were things that they mostly needed. My children have more than enough and I would much rather spend our money on time together/experiences. I hope you feel better soon. Merry Christmas or Froh Weinachten und eine gute rutsch in die neues jahr.

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  4. I seem to be a terrible judge of time and this year simply haven't had the time needed to decorate for Christmas the way I'd like, however, it's made me cherish the time I do have and be thankful that the really important things are still able to be done (time together, a meaningful Advent wreath and calendar, etc.).

    Our Advent wreath this year is ultra 'schlicht', but it's just fine b/c we still have a wreath we light each Sunday. We have Kaffee und Kuchen by our wreath and talk about the meaning behind it and that is what's important! =)

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  5. I just now read this post...yes, I am that behind on keeping up with all of my friend's blogs. However, I wanted to let you know that I really appreciate it and totally agree with what you are saying. We did a very much scaled-down Christmas this year as well. We did put up a tree and the lighted village, but those made it up mostly because the little one could see lights at that time and enjoyed helping us decorate. Love you!

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