It was 79 degrees outside and the leaves were all still bright green. Most people were in shorts and flip-flops- myself included. But it was October and I was craving the cold. I was craving warm sweaters, crunchy leaves, chilly evenings, and soup. Lots and lots of soup.
I also had a great desire for something to lift my spirits, brighten my day, and make me feel all warm and fuzzy on the inside. And that's when I knew- it was time to crank up my A/C, wrap up in my snuggie, and play all my favorite Christmas tunes.
But every year when I start to feel that ache, I know a few people who act as if I had just murdered someone for listening to "Winter Wonderland" or "Mary Did You Know" before Black Friday. You'd think I had just told them I had kidnapped someone's child or something.
So Little Time!Look, I get it. When you walk through the aisles of a store in the middle of October and they already have all their Christmas items for sale, it is a bit much. Christmas has become so commercial and superficial that it's no wonder people are skeptical.
However, despite my distaste for commercialism, I still get excited when I see those things. It isn't because I want Christmas to be what Walmart, Target, and the like turn it into- because I don't. But Christmas seems to come and go more quickly every year, and for that reason I want to savor every moment of the season. And as much as I can, I want to extend the season. I am far less bummed out about Christmas ending if I've been celebrating since October. One month of Christmas cheer is simply not enough.
Skipping ThanksgivingPeople also say that if I celebrate Christmas early, then I am just skipping Thanksgiving and not enjoying each moment. But oh how wrong they are!
Christmas is all about the love and joy of Christ. It's about Him coming to earth to save us. Secondarily, it's about appreciating our loved ones and spending time with them. Likewise, Thanksgiving is all about being being thankful, spending time with loved ones, and celebrating all that we have been blessed with.
Thanksgiving is not technically a Christian holiday (though it's roots are intertwined), but as a Christian, the biggest thing I have to be thankful for is the salvation I have in Jesus. And when I think of all the people and things I love and am thankful for, I have joy. I even find joy in the little things: the goofy, low-budget Christmas films, the chocolate chip cookies that my mom taught me to make, and the sounds of N*sync Christmas filling the room. All of those things give me great pleasure, joy, and a thankful heart in varying degrees.
So to me, Christmas and Thanksgiving are connected. They both pair so well together that there's no reason I can't celebrate both at the same time. I am perfectly capable of being thankful while listening to "All I Want For Christmas". In fact, the sounds, the smells, and really just "all of the feels" of Christmas serve to enhance my thankfulness as long as I keep my head on straight.
So for those of you who get all "grinchy" when people start celebrating Christmas early, know this: just because you don't like to celebrate both at the same time, doesn't mean that I can't. Just because you aren't excited about Christmas trees and lights in October doesn't mean that there's anything wrong with me being excited. And just because I don't wait until Black Friday to start celebrating Christmas, doesn't mean I am skipping over Thanksgiving.
Finally, for all you Christmas lovers out there who totally get it, I have made a Christmas playlist that I've already listened to for hours-upon-hours. I've got to tell you up front, I've got some quirky taste in music, but if you like Disney, pop, and Pentatonix, you'll love it! And if you are skeptical, give it a try anyway, because you know I'm cool ;)
And if you're feeling all Christmasy now, I don't blame you! Here are a few more posts worth checking out!
Good Deeds Kids Will Cherish (House Of Fauci's)
D.I.Y. Decorations: Picture Perfect Wreath (Curbside Overhaul)
How to Have Stress-Free Holidays (Ever Change Productions)
What Do I Get My Daycare Kids for Christmas? (Little Sprouts Learning)
Granny's Christmas Party Mix (Hello Daycare)
Have a Relaxed and Organized Christmas (Home Again Jiggety Jig)