Thursday, November 1, 2012

Bah humbug

The Christmas decorations are up in our local shopping centre.  Same decorations as last year and the year before.  Classy.  Won't be long before the Christmas music starts as well.

Most people who know me well, are aware that I'm not a big fan of Christmas.  I'd really rather skip the whole thing.  Last year, I tried extra hard for the kids' sake.  I purchased my first-ever Christmas album.  Sadly, it didn't arrive in the post until mid-January.  I also bought a tree and put it up for the first time.  I'd been working multiple excuses to avoid a tree for many years: the cat will destroy it, we won't be home for Christmas anyway, the lights are too dangerous for the kids, our youngest will eat the baubles.

To be fair, one year he did actually take a bite out of one of my sister-in-law's tree ornaments so I wasn't making the safety issues up.

But I did finally agree that as much as I can't be bothered with Christmas, it wasn't really fair on the kids once they were old enough to realize that some people had trees in their own homes.  It was a good run for a while when they thought trees were only at the shops or Nana's house.  This year, I might even take it a step further and let the kids help decorate the tree.  Baby steps.

I know you are shocked.  I'm glad that Jesus was born.  I'm just not a big fan of all the paraphernalia and the fuss.  When we moved countries, we left behind the old Christmas traditions and I'm still trying to make the new Christmas traditions feel like they belong to me.  Plus in a minister's family, Christmas is always a really, really hectic time.  Everyone is exhausted and ready to collapse at the end of another year.  It's not all that peaceful.   And to be honest, Christmas traditions weren't big in our family growing up. I remember at least a couple of times we had sweet and sour pork and lemon cheesecake for Christmas lunch. It was our favourite meal so why mess about with anything else?

This is the second Christmas that I've been Sunday School coordinator.  I think I got away with not doing the Christmas pageant last year because there was a lot going on in the church.  But I'm beginning to wonder if they'll be on to me this year.  "No nativity play two years in a row?  Something's not right."

I don't have anything against nativity plays.  I just don't want to be the donkey who has to organize it.  And I don't want to give up four weeks of Sunday School teaching time to teach lines.  And we all know the archangel Gabriel will get sick on the day and not show.  Then you've got the last minute stress of cramming Gabriel's lines into the head of second shepherd and hoping he'll agree to wear a white dress and wings!

Look, I'm warming to Christmas.  It's the pressure of doing Christmas "a certain way" that gets me huffy.  My head starts to spin with all the "have-to"s and then I want to lie down and hope no one remembers me till January.  One year, I'm going to make sweet and sour pork and lemon cheesecake and enjoy myself immensely.

How's Christmas looking for you?

8 comments:

CardsAsGifts said...

I just about fell off my chair when I read you put up a christmas tree last year!!!! Hilarious! I hate the over commercialisation of christmas and easter too. As soon as one is over the 'goods' for the other are put out on the shelves. Crazy stuff. I do like taking Mr B to our fav christmas lights display... and seeing Cohn (the man who puts it on each year) and his train with lights that goes around a substantial track. It has made our last few christmases magic. I hate to think this might be the last year Cohn does it, developers have purchased all the land there including his place and one of these days, all new housing will go in there and the christmas lights farm will be no more. I think that will be a sad day for Mr B and I. It will be my duty then I guess to come up with something to replace it... not sure I can top it.

Deb said...

Awh, that sounds like a lovely tradition to have. What a blow that it might end!

kdbkenyon said...

Im still giggling as i type after reading your post. I am very glad for your kids sake that you are putting a tree up! However as for traditions why not talk to kids and Steve about what you do, who says you cant have sweet and sour pork with lemon cheesecake or whatever you want? I love being in Perth and not knowing people....means we dont have to catch up eith everybody before Christmas. Means there is no pressure to have to do stuff (i had this mad idea that baking for everybody was a good thing to do, based on what my mum used to do). We have one work celebration family day which is lots of fun for kids, and one Christmas Carol event that we might attend and that is our responsibilty! Love it! Christmas Day itself will be spent down at the beach enjoying Gods beautiful creation on His sons birthday...no other plans. Or have to be anywheres! Love it....can i just say I love Perth....

Anonymous said...

How are we friends?? I love Christmas! But then again it's never too hectic. We have a family present opening birthday party for Jesus with cake at some stage (maybe Christmas eve, maybe a few days before, whenever we have plenty of time), and then a bit of a do (relaxed, bbq, salads) with whoever from my family is around, usually on Christmas Eve and a brunch do by the water with the other side on boxing day so at the moment Christmas day is usually cruisy - we'll see how that changes when my parents reeturn. This year I am going to have to slow down as I'll probably be on bed rest - so it will be interesting to see how I cope! J

Deb said...

Down at the beach? Sounds brilliant! Why do the Perth mob get all the fun?

Deb said...

New tradition! Christmas Day in pyjamas! It could catch on...

Jessica said...

I like Christmas, although early shop decorations make me angry as well. I like carols, I like presents, I like an excuse to go home and be a whole family in the one place (although with a sister on the phone again this year). My family started a tradition of pies and wedges for lunch on Christmas day and boxing day. Supermarket packet food, in the oven, with sauce. We aren't the sort for elaborate effort. Go to church, visit the neighbour next door, watch a DVD, birthday cake for Jesus.

Deb said...

Oh, I love the sound of the low-stress Christmas lunch! That would be fantastic.