Originally Posted December 10, 2019
How do we keep the holiday spirit during the last month of the year?
With it being the holiday season time is going to fly and soon we will be in
2020 2023. It seems futuristic to me. With it being the last month of the year, it seems like this month is always the hardest. Between Thanksgiving Dinner & Christmas dinner. Then the gifts it seems to me that most people can relate that bills, car issues, and other setbacks seem to fall in our laps a lot more.
It’s an episode of Survivor over here!
Right now, Mike and I are trying to survive since we didn’t know his work would be this slow. I mean we are cutting it close when it comes to paying our bills. We will make it work but it’s a little stressful. I am just glad we are done Christmas shopping for Mikayla.
Mike and I normally don’t get gifts for each other. It’s hard on him because he wants to give us the best Christmas EVER! However, I don’t need or want anything. If I need something it’s usually something I can pick up during the year, but most likely won’t. Some things I just slack on getting and Mike picks them up for me for Christmas. He knows I won’t spend the money to buy it for myself.
Last year he bought me hair dye and razors (like the good ones). I will go for cheap things for myself and spend more money on others. The holiday season is to be thankful for what we have in our lives like family, friends, the roof over our heads, and the food in our bellies.
Where did the holiday spirit go?
One thing that does annoy me is that with each passing generation, the season is losing its value as the times are changing. I remember as a kid loving to go see light displays, going to see Santa, and decorating the house with fall decorations then with Christmas decorations. It was my favorite time of the year. I had never felt more close to my family.
Kids believe less and less in the spirit and more of what new electronic mommy and daddy will buy them. The mystery of Santa watching our kids being naughty or nice has lost its effect. Mikayla could care less what Santa has seen her do, she still did it. There were no consequences. She stopped believing last year and that was the year the straw broke the camel’s back for me.
Christmas was almost canceled
Last year I spent my Christmas crying. I spent months and months picking out gifts I thought Mikayla would love. Present after present she opened she would just look at it, no reaction, and say next. No emotion, no appreciation! It killed me. I started bawling. It still makes me cry while writing this. I was going to find a picture from last Christmas and I don’t have any. That’s crazy I did not take any photos or videos.
Now you can tell how upset I was… I didn’t even want proof it happened. LOL
I was determined not to do the holidays this year. I was not going to decorate, shop, or go to events. My holiday spirit was lost. With Mikayla, it had gotten worse over the past couple of years. I don’t know if it’s because she has Christmas with so many people. She has Christmas with us, with her mother, with her mother’s mom, and with her mom’s fiance’s mother. She has 4 Christmas.
Ours is first so you think she would be excited but she wasn’t.
What saved Christmas?
Mikey… plain, and simple. My stepson. Back in August, we decided to ask Mikey if he wanted to come down from Massachusetts for Christmas and he said yes. I got really excited and then really annoyed. There went my plan to punish everyone for their Grinch-ness the year before.
I got over it. This would be our first Christmas as a family. Me, Mike, and our 2 kids. We bought Mikey and his girlfriend Alexa plane tickets. They would be here for 2 weeks, into the new year. It was going to be amazing!
This was going to be Mikey’s first Christmas with Mike in a long time. It’s also Mikayla’s first Christmas with her brother. So we have to make things special. We’re going all out, but not going into debt over it. Everything we do is on a budget because again were are still working on our finances.
As the world turns…
However, that dream lasted for 4 months.
Mikey told us in mid-November he couldn’t come. We were sad and depressed. It is what it is. There is always next year. We needed to do something to get out of this funk.
Sorry for the long-winded post, but I just needed to share how my holiday season has been going so far and I think some can relate. I could easily come up with more than 10 tips on keeping the holiday spirit this season. If you would like to see part 2 let me know.
So here are a few tips on how to stay in a cheerful mood without ripping your hair out…
On with the TIPS!
1. Stay true to yourself.
If Christmas is your favorite holiday let your freak flag fly. Don’t let others bring you down. Show those around you that you love them and are thankful for them. Maybe your positive attitude will rub off on the Grinches.
2. Set a holiday budget.
Expensive gifts do not show love. I buy one expensive gift, my Stepdaughter, that she really wants and the rest of the gifts are practical. Things she will get a lot of use out of.
3. Do family-friendly events.
Every year we go to the symphony of lights. It’s a light show done to the music of the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Lights, music, snow, and ice skating. What more could you want?
4. Play your favorite holiday songs.
I love to sing. I am always putting on concerts at my house. Singing, dancing, and maybe making some YouTube videos with the family.
Are you in the holiday spirit yet?
5. Take lots of photos and videos.
Cherish the time you have together and make lots of memories. Nothing brings back the Christmas vibes than watching old videos or looking at photos of past Christmas’. As I mentioned earlier I have none from last year and I feel bad about it. I want to remember the good, the bad, and the ugly.
6. Make your home holiday-friendly.
Even if you don’t live in ideal weather conditions you can still fake it on the inside. We used to make a fake fireplace to hang our stockings. It was so much fun. Now I just hang them on the wall. We don’t have enough space, but this tradition will come back when we move.
7. Remember loved ones who can’t be with you.
The ones living far away, the ones you may be fighting with, or the ones who may have gone to better places in heaven. When my mom passed at the time my sister and I were not talking but I decided to text her one night while in Walmart that I found a pickle ornament that I was going to buy for mom. My sister replied she had the same idea and bought the same exact one for her tree. My mom was obsessed with pickles and Pepsi.
8. Do something good for a stranger.
If you see someone having a stressful day and all they want was a coffee, a little pick me up and can’t find their money or the kids are running around screaming. Pay for them. A simple act of kindness could put pep in their step and then they will pay it forward.
9. Watch holiday movies.
They make you nostalgic for a white Christmas and a love story. Everything I am telling you is in those cheesy Christmas movies. Think about how you felt as a kid and hold on to that feeling. I want my kids to have the same goofy look I did when I was their age. We make popcorn, and get in our jammies. We grab blankets, pillows, and whatever else we need. Cozying up on the couch with great holiday movies to put you in the holiday spirit.
10. Show everyone in your life the true meaning of Christmas.
It’s not about presents, money, food or anything else materialistic. It’s about showing the people you love that you appreciate and are thankful for them for being in your life. The people around you are the ones who lift you up when you are down and encourage you to take risks to better your life. That chooses to deal with your crazy ass! Most of all they love you. Don’t stress too much Christmas doesn’t have to be done in a week.
How do I keep the holiday spirit?
That’s it. My 10 tips on keeping the holiday spirit this season! Don’t be stressed if you don’t have a lot of money to buy things you don’t really need. Make your home warm and inviting and share your spirit with everyone in your life and your Christmas will be the best yet.
I am going to block it out and let go of what happened last year and focus on this year in hopes Mikayla loves what she got. More importantly, I am going to show my family and friends my love for the season and them. That by the time I am done they won’t want to come over for presents. It’s a win, win. I fill their lives with Christmas joy up the wazoo and I save money by not having to buy presents. lol =)
Soak up the holiday spirit
I am just kidding, I am just soaking in all the holiday spirit and decorating my house. We got the majority of it done. I even have my gifts wrapped and under the tree. Mike and I made it a date night when we took out all the Christmas decor. We had a few drinks, tested some lights, and had a lot of laughs. The following weekend we decorated the tree with Mikayla.
If you have any tips please comment below. I would love to hear what you guys do to keep your spirits high or your favorite Christmas story as a child.
Until next time, have a great day!