We’re officially into the twelve day countdown.
The funny thing about this is, it wasn’t until I named this file “column 12/12” that I truly realized, yep! It’s upon us.
That’s the problem with living in a society which seems to be in such a hurry to get to the next thing. Well, at least that’s my take. Somehow we’ve lost the true beauty of living in the moment and are caught up in the true rat race of being the first or the fastest.
Case in point, it was the middle of last week when I began wondering if I’d met the window of putting up a tree in time to truly enjoy it. The day I had this angst, December 5. Insert face palm here, because that’s truly how I felt when I came to the reality that there were three weeks/20 days left until Christmas day. Dear goodness.
But I guess that’s what happens when you see Christmas trimmings and such creeping in to stores by mid-September. The reason for this, I’m still unsure, but it seems to be getting more widespread and well … it’s concerning.
The old saying goes, you can’t get too much of a good thing. In this instance I’m going to have to disagree. Just based on the simple fact that I had been surrounded by the seasonal merriment for so long that I felt I was late to the party Dec. 5 is concerning.
The good news is there was indeed an adverse effect.
During my ride to work that morning, I began thinking of weekend baking with my kids. Finally making the trip to pick the perfect tree and the two days it would take to put it up.
Tradition in our home is simple, first the tree goes up with lights and remains that way for 24 hours, ornaments come the next day. I love a green tree with white lights. If I had my way that would be it. It’s breathtakingly beautiful. But like most homes we have sentimental ornaments and without them there would be no storytelling and well, those are part of the magic of the season.
I’m also funny about gifts and how they’re placed/tagged around our tree. My daughter is her mother. That being said, I know her tricks before she even has the thought. So there are no tags on gifts. They’re marked, but in an undisclosed location only to be revealed by mom when presents are distributed Christmas day.
While my daughter is sneaky and curious, she is not so bad that she would venture to check all gifts which is why they remain unmarked. I tend to be thrifty about our wrappings and gift bags. This fact can sometimes be as fun as the ornaments, as a Santa hat wearing cookie monster gift bag is revealed from a tub. Good times.
So while the world around us would like us to hurry up and snatch up all the trimmings before Halloween, deck our halls before we cut our turkey and spend the day of Thanksgiving mapping out a shopping tour for Black Friday – I’ll take a pass.
Life these days with my not so littles is just moving a bit too fast on some days. Sweet little chubby cheeks and squealing voices have been replaced by two young adults almost equal to my stature.
In short, I’ll stay old school by way of the holiday and embracing this time of the year. While it is indeed one of my most favorite I’m in no hurry to prolong it and miss all the others, life’s just too short to hurry everything along. Merry Christmas.
Teresa Hammond is a staff reporter for The Oakdale Leader, The Riverbank News and The Escalon Times. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling 847-3021.