Simplify the Holidays

Because life is easier when it’s simple, I have decided to merge that principle into my holiday celebrations. What used to be a December filled with activities and the traditional holiday set-ups, I have now prefaced with the following questions:

Christmas tree on red background with gold elements
  • How can I simplify the holidays?
  • What gives me the most joy about Christmas?
  • What changes do I need to make that keep the spirit of the season yet make life easier?

Christmas Cards

Although I love to send and receive greeting cards throughout the year, the business of addressing and mailing Christmas cards to my entire address list has become overkill. I hereby determine to simplify the process.

I still believe all these people are important in my life, yet I am setting a card boundary. This year, I will save time, money, and energy on Christmas cards. Please do not be offended if you are deleted. Consider this your greeting: Merry Christmas!

Holiday Treats

In the past, I have baked and frosted, wrapped and packaged treats for my neighbors, the postman, people at work and anyone else in my life who did not receive a store-bought gift. This year will be different.

The temptation of cookie dough in my large pottery bowl and the smell of rising breads no longer attract me. This year, my kitchen table will NOT be spread with powdered sugar treats fondly called People Puppy Chow. My body will thank me, because I am always tempted to eat half of them.

I vow to protect my heart, my brain, and my arteries from excess powdered sugar. I am setting a culinary boundary.

Holiday Decorations

Throughout the years, my house has often sported decorations in every room. Walking through Hobby Lobby, Hallmark stores, or Kirkland during this time of the year gives me great joy.

But since a stager opened my eyes to a more simplified décor, I have decided to change my holiday habits.

Compared to other years, the mantel will seem sparse. My theme is pinecones which remind me of the New Mexico mountains. Simple yet beautiful—a display of God’s creation accented with little pearl lights.

Many former decorations, I will give away. It feels good to share the beauty of my past with someone else. My little tree with its tiny pre-lit globes still works. No need to buy the newer version.

A simpler Christmas helps me focus more on the meaning of the holiday rather than the trappings of it. The joy of Christmas-giving still belongs with the young, so I have fun planning gifts for my son and his wife, for the young ones in my extended family. The rest of us do not need any more stuff.

The holiday surprise of 2023 is the joy of simplification. More room on my storage shelves with less stuff to store. More space in each room. More things to give away and share with someone else.

When I surround myself ONLY with the things that bring me joy, the essential leftovers offer pleasure. And in the choice to simplify my holidays, hope follows into the new year.

A toast of eggnog to all my followers. Enjoy your version of the holidays and let me know in the comments how you will celebrate.

©2023 RJ Thesman – All Rights Reserved / Image by monicore of Pixabay

If you’d like to share a Christmas gift with me, check out my Author Page on Amazon. The purchase of a book or a written review is always acceptable. 

3 thoughts on “Simplify the Holidays”

  1. ‘Tis the gift to be simple
    ‘Tis the gift to be free
    ‘Tis the gift to come down
    Where we ought to be
    And when we find ourselves
    In the place just right
    ‘Twill be in the valley
    Of love and delight

  2. Brilliant (with a bit of chagrin, perhaps, to a boatload of clamoring advertisers). In place of card, I happily accept your ‘Merry Christmas’. Back at ya!
    Will enjoy time in farm country in the company of dear offspring and company. I never tire of rooster-crow greetings – with the exception of the occasional 4 a.m. feathery chap who seems wired to a different time zone.

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