Friday, November 18, 2011

holiday list

christmas 2010
I'm one of those people who doesn't want to think about Christmas until Thanksgiving is over - one holiday at a time please! I'm also a bit of a scrooge. I loved Christmas as a kid, but sometime around my teenage years, Christmas lost its magic...and sadly, I never found it again. Sure, there are plenty of things I like about the holidays - I'm crazy for Christmas trees, twinkle lights, and cooooookies, especially. I love Christmas crafts and am always pinning new ideas. But commercialism and consumerism always seem to squash my Christmas spirit, the cold weather makes me cranky, and the holidays ultimately leave me feeling stressed out, overwhelmed, and sleep-deprived.

In my perfect world, there would be a ban on shopping malls and their fugly fake Christmas trees, inflatatable Santas, those commercials with shiny new Mercedes topped with big red bows, and Black Friday sales. Seriously, this is how America celebrates Christmas - by fighting over cheap crap made in China in a Walmart at midnight the day after Thanksgiving? Yuck.

Sometimes Christmas makes me feel like this:
christmas 2010
Christmas = Dog Butt

That being said, owning my own business has me viewing the holidays in a different light. Business-wise, I can't deny the consumer aspect of Christmas. People do a lot of shopping this time of year and as a business owner I have to be prepared for that. And I like that my shop can provide an alternative to mass-produced gifts. Giving thoughtful handmade gifts is much more my speed and I like being part of a community that promotes this.

But being a business owner also has me planning ahead and thinking about Christmas much earlier than I'm used to. And I'm ok with that. I've been excited about it this year. Sure, I've been stressed out as I'm prepping for holiday art markets, but I'm thinking about how once the markets are over with, I'm going to sit back and enjoy the last two weeks before Christmas - snuggled with my family in front of the fire, admiring the twinkle lights, baking, and not stressing out. I'm really looking forward to it.
christmas 2010
I recently read about the German concept of Gem├╝tlichkeit. (Don't ask me how to pronounce that!) It can be loosely defined as coziness, the absence of anything hectic, togetherness, and the opportunity to spend comfortable, calm, quality time with friends and loved ones, often while lighting candles and enjoying good food and drink. I love this concept, and being of German ancestry makes me love it even more. I hope to spend the holiday season just like this - cozied up with the ones I love. 
christmas 2010
Gravy and Banjo have the concept of Gem├╝tlichkeit down pat. Yup, they're both in this photo.

Amy of Just a Titch recently made a Holiday To Do List and inspired me to do the same. It's a good reminder to take some time for some fun activities amid the typical December busy-ness:

I probably won't check off half of these, but it's nice to have a list to refer to when I start feeling Scrooge-like!


Karen Travels said...

Great post! I love this German concept, never heard of it. Being 33+ weeks pregnant this holiday season, I will have no choice but to relax and not stress - and eat whatever I want!

Love the list!!

Sarah Rosemary said...

I am a bit of a scrooge, too! As a child, I loved Christmas. But, like you said, somewhere around high school, I fell out of love with Christmas. Now, with Kate, I am trying to dig deep and find ways for me to enjoy the holidays. I don't want her growing up and saying her mom was a mean, holiday scrooge!

Sarah said...

Beautiful photos and wonderful sentiment. I'm usually one of those people hurrying around in the days leading up to Christmas, throwing gifts together so everyone has "something". This year, I want to be different and embrace the coziness as well. :)