Taking The CRAZY Out Of The Holidays

I’m hesitant to push the “publish” button for fear that you’ll all think that I’ma scrooge, but hang with me til the end, ‘k?

Taking the CRAZY out of the Holidays || Cheeky Bums Blog

So…

I find myself in hibernation mode right now…and not just because it was a balmy -3’F here in northern Indiana this week.

And no, I’m not in denial that Christmas is coming soon. It’s just that everything that I see on a daily basis that would remind me that Christmas is coming soon is not about CHRISTMAS…it’s about pinterest, Toys R Us and Apple.

Yes, I appreciate a burlap wrapped Christmas tree as much as the next person, but If I see another popsicle stick Rudolf, I might jump into the bowl of egg nog.

Ok, not really.

But I’ll be honest and say it did cross my mind…

Please, don’t hate me and think I’m a scrooge…but as my kids are getting older (and by default I am getting older)…Christmas has become almost overwhelming…

And now it’s time for a confession – this past month, I opted NOT to incorporate any holiday/Christmas related books into our homeschool curriculum.

[insert gasps of horror]

I know.  My children are deprived and neglected and I’m denying them a rich cultural and spiritual heritage.

Instead, our read aloud book for the last few weeks has been the children’s version of the story of Nate Saint.

nate saint

Right after WW II, Nate and his wife moved to Ecuador and devoted themselves to serving the tribal people and other missionaries in the Amazon  rain forest.  In January of 1956, he and his four friends were martyred on a small beach in the middle of the Amazon, by the very people they had come to help.

It had absolutely nothing to do with Christmas, but we finished the book this week, amid tears and some pretty heavy questions from my kids.

There were no angels or Wise Men on camels.

But it was a story of self-sacrifice.

More than anything, I want my children to hear that message during this time…a message that is completely foreign to our first-world culture, especially in light of all that we’re seeing on the commercials and in store windows during this season.

No, it wasn’t about Christmas, but it was the story of men that went to a strange land.

To love a violent and rejected people.

The very people that ended up killing them.

Sounds kind of like the Christmas Story.

I finally realized this year, that for our family to take some of the CRAZY out of the holidays, it  actually meant downplaying “Christmas” in it’s most base sense. Now, before you report me to the scrooge police, trust me; my brood will still hear the traditional Christmas passages and stories and there will be plenty of presents and twinkly lights.

However,  instead of falling into the traditional hustle and bustle, I decided to go out on a limb and not over accentuate Christmas in our own home.   It makes for a calmer mommy, fewer melt downs (mine, not theirs), and a decreased amount of, “Mommy, I NEED this for Christmas!!!”

Instead, I’m concentrating on what I want my children to remember about Christmas:  just the simple story of a Man who laid down His life for others, and who inspired us to do the same, even for the un-lovable…

 

What about you?  I can’t be the only one on Holiday-overload!!!  What do you do to keep things calm and sane during the holiday season??

photo credit

 

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4 Responses to “Taking The CRAZY Out Of The Holidays”
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  1. Joy

    Rock on, sister!

  2. Cassandra

    Thank you for sharing this! Rob and I have been having this conversation every other day it seems- looking at what seems to be the focus in the more traditional forms of celebration, and then asking the question of what does that really teach of Jesus birth? What do we as a family want this time to speak of and to be about, and what do we want to teach our daughter through the things we emphasize and do in celebration. We are soooo with you on this one! :)

  3. angela

    No need to apologize, and I don’t think you’re a scrooge either…the things you are cutting out don’t really have to do with Christmas but family/cultural tradition and can be far off from true CHRISTmas. Our kids should grow up different…we are called a peculiar people. Sticking to the heart and true meaning of Christmas is far from ‘holiday depravation’. My heart breaks for the millions of families who will miss that truth this year and while they will enjoy family, the season, the lights, etc. They will miss the true heart and meaning and mission and calling toward those who believe in Son of God who lowered himself to be born and bring salvation to mankind

  4. It was an epic fail for me, as far as a stress-free Christmas. Partly (mostly) through no fault of my own. Stress & Christmas…. we’re buddies. :-/

    ~Andrea
    XOXOXO
    Andrea recently posted..A course in spending money….My Profile

 

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