It’s the MOST wonderful time of the year…
It is, right? Aren’t you convinced?
Well, I do love this time of year, but I admit, it tends to get a little overwhelming right about….NOW!
All the commercialism really starts to grate, and it’s a little stressful trying to keep up with all the parties, programs, and pageants…
And then the cooking, and the decorating, and the shopping…
And regular scheduling doesn’t stop for all this – there are still ballgames, practices, homework, and doctors’ appointments!
And yes, I admit, Pinterest gives me a headache this time of year – I can NOT decorate a differently-themed tree for every room, NOR can I handcraft nifty little Christmas gifts for all of our teachers, preachers, and coaches! And as for Elf on a Shelf? Well, that’s just where ours remains – on the shelf in the department store. My kids have never met him. (And for the record, if we had one, his name would be Hermie the Dentist, at least until my 5 year old changed it to something like “SkullCrusher” – his preferred personal nickname.)
You know, I blame myself every year for letting things get a little out of hand, or for continuously holding myself up to those standards that we all see out there in Internetworldbloggerland every day. This year is no exception. Despite my best intentions to keep it simple and keep the focus on the reason for the season – CHRIST – I catch myself getting caught up in the craziness again.
“I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” (Romans 7:15)
So, today, I just had a little flash across my silly brain. I want to create a few moments every day to come right here and share some “Christmas Spirit” with you – some of the fun stuff, beautiful stuff, and TRUE STUFF about this amazing holiday. I’m going to keep it free from my normally snarky, sarcastic tendencies, and I’m going to simply focus on what is wonderful about this time of year. I’m going to attempt to do this EVEN on the days when I feel FAR from wanting to spread Christmas cheer far and near for all to hear!
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8)
BUT, I’m going to give myself one reprieve here. I am NOT going to PROMISE you that there will be a new post every day. That is my intention, yes. But I am going to love myself and offer myself some peace this Christmas – and that is the peace of not having to be perfect. I hope that’s okay with you, and I hope you’ll offer that to yourself this year, and extend it to those around you as well.
So, if you find yourself getting caught up in the Christmas Crazies, I would invite you to stop by and visit me here whenever you get a chance this month. I hope I’ll have something posted that will give you some cheer, inspiration, encouragement, or a moment to just pause and reflect on the joy and true meaning of the season!
Today, I simply want to share some beautiful vintage Christmas scenes that make me happy. I warned you – this might be silly! But, there is just something about them that makes me think back to simpler times, more innocent and happy times.
I remember receiving painted cards such as these from my grandmothers and aunts during the holidays – addressed especially to me! Maybe this will inspire you to send special Christmas card greetings to some little ones in your life that are important to you. I guarantee it will make their day, and who knows…maybe inspire them to share some cheer with another person who needs it this holiday season!
This next one reminds me of the Santa Train which makes it way through rural Appalachia each Christmas, ending up in my own hometown of Kingsport, Tennessee, where Santa disembarks after spreading cheer and delivering presents to good little girls and boys throughout Southwestern Kentucky, Southwest Virginia, and Northeast Tennessee. He ends his journey by bringing his special magic to finish off our hometown Christmas Parade – a magical and blessed day for so many in our region who might otherwise never enjoy a visit from the Jolly Old Elf.
Christmas Carolers always bring me such joy! Why don’t we all do more of this? I remember caroling as we visited nursing homes, walking door-to-door through our neighborhoods, and even on hayrides! Lots of people groan and complain if you tell them we’re going caroling together – but most of them end up having more fun than they ever imagined. Try it, you’ll like it! And don’t forget the wassail!
Finally, my last one for today! I entitled it “Peace in the Valley” – and what could be more peaceful than a beautiful snow settling over our homes, and the thought of preparing ourselves for the upcoming festivities with our loved ones?
I hope, and I pray for you, that you find some peace today, in the midst of all of the hustle and bustle and craziness! I’ll try to come back and post some more “happy happy happy” Christmas cheer tomorrow!
Peace out…with love,