A Less Stressed Christmas

by Kerry

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I’m thinking about Christmas! I know, it’s July. But I’m attempting to simplify and that means planning ahead.

With each passing December I hear more people declare that their seasonal stress level has hit its max. I know, for myself and my family, if I’m stressing over Christmas I’m missing the point. We have scaled back bits and pieces of unnecessary holiday madness for the last several years. And I love it.

Many homes have moved to the extreme of no gift giving (I feel funny saying that’s “extreme” but in our culture it is!)…

Simply, they celebrate Christ’s birth.

Shocking, isn’t it? I was talking on the phone with a dear friend of ours last season and in the middle of our conversation she made sure to tell me: “We don’t do Christmas here, in our home. Just wanted to make sure you knew that. We don’t do gifts, any of that. So please don’t bring me anything. We believe in God sending His son for us and we focus on that. And we understand everyone does the holidays a little differently. And that’s okay for each person to choose how they want to celebrate. For us, we just don’t.”

I think she explained so much because she knew I might be a tad shocked. And I have to admit – I was!! And definitely speechless for several seconds after said explanation! She is the type of woman who is beloved by so many people she could easily be bombarded with gifts every year. So I understood tons of what she was conveying to me. Still caught by surprise, though.

I hesitantly told her I had a card for her – a picture card of our kids – and asked if that would be okay for me to still send? She said sure, she would love that. Phew! I didn’t completely offend!

Then I couldn’t help but think maybe she’s onto something. We add all the extra stress ourselves.

I can’t quite imagine eliminating Christmas in our home. But I am all for dropping the “hype” that surrounds it. The idea you most go broke if you’re going to make it a Christmas to remember. And the knock yourself out with baking overload. And so on and so on.

What’s YOUR opinion?

How do you handle holiday hullabaloo?

What do you focus most of your efforts toward to make Christmas more enjoyable? Or, perhaps more specifically, what have you cut out over the years? I know many friends of mine cut back on card giving over the years because of the sheer cost of stamps, let alone picture costs. I feel like we receive fewer cards each year – maybe a family/child picture. I totally understand this. It’s hard to think about spending so much money on cards that will most likely end up in the trash a few weeks later. I have to say – I miss the cards! Is that too hype-ish? I don’t know.

Do you have any tips for us, or traditions you can share, that make Christmastime less stressful for your family?

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*Check back in for a fun pre-Christmas giveaway coming soon!
Now don’t judge! It’s a gift with meaning. I enjoy gift giving, Christmas or not. ;)

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