I don’t think anyone loves Christmas more than I do. I love the lights, the smell of a real Christmas tree, the music, the cookies, the cards, the parties, and even the shopping. Christmas is the one holiday I really look forward to each year, and have ever since I can remember. But here’s the thing: the last time I checked, Christmas doesn’t actually come until December 25.
I still remember standing on our front lawn one night with my father, looking at at the Christmas lights on the house across the street. “Now that’s really pushing the season!” my father told me, shaking his head in disgust. He couldn’t believe that anyone would put their Christmas lights up on December 1st. I wonder what my father would have said about the woman I recently saw happily stringing lights and bells across her fence on November 1st. Then again, I probably know exactly what he would have said, and it wouldn’t have been complimentary.
Personally, I think my father may have been a little bit too strict in holding off on his Christmas celebrations. (The first year my parents were married, he didn’t look for a tree until late Christmas eve and all the lots were closed, but that’s another story.) But I admit that it bothers me to see Christmas lights up in early November and to see fully-decorated trees in windows weeks before Thanksgiving. Yes, we all get to decide when we begin decorating for our favorite holidays, but it seems to me that there’s such a thing as “too early.”
It’s weird to see someone’s leftover Halloween decorations being displayed right next to a house that is all decked out for Christmas. It’s annoying to hear Christmas carols being played in the grocery store while I’m still trying to decide what size turkey I’m going to need for Thanksgiving this year. And while I understand that stores want to put out their holiday merchandise as early as possible, I resent being forced to buy wrapping paper and other Christmas paraphernalia in November because I know perfectly well it will all be picked over by December 6th. And replaced with Valentine’s Day decorations by December 20th, if not before.
Besides, my tiny little mind doesn’t multi-task well, so all this blending of the holidays is confusing for me. I like to concentrate on one thing at a time. So what’s wrong with waiting until one holiday is over before we begin the celebrations for the next one? Whatever happened to “living in the moment?” And how can we possibly enjoy the anticipation of our favorite holiday when we’re surrounded by people who insist on acting as if it’s already here?
Yes, I love Christmas. Always have, and always will. Which is why I also believe that it’s a holiday worth waiting for…..