What do you really want for Christmas? Our ideas may differ in the details, but most of us want much the same thing: a seasonal celebration focused on faith, family and friends.
We want the excitement of the season without the disruption that too often comes with it. We want to draw closer to those around us, not to be thrust apart by hectic schedules. We want to enjoy as well as to prepare, and to keep the Christmas season in a manner that is joyous and spiritually centered.
And so begins the checklist that my mother sent me. The site is called Organized Christmas, and my mother is doing their six-week long program which is designed to walk you, step-by-step, through the task of preparing for Christmas.
For the most part, I don’t have any problems with procrastination, but I wanted to play along with her because I’m appreciating the first piece of advice in their series:
Focus on holiday values before you begin to plan the season’s activities. Knowing where your values lie allows you to set a path to true holiday happiness, and to avoid the minefields that culture and commercialism will throw in your way.
This year I really took some time to decide how I wanted to approach the holidays. I don’t want to rush through Thanksgiving and get straight to that one day of gift giving. I wanted to really embrace the holidays and every. single. day between now and the end of the year.
The funny thing is that I found my value inspiration when I was perusing Christmas cards. Minted.com is one of those sites that you can order cards and paper goods, but it’s a bit different than the traditional ones in that they work side by side with designers.
They are illustrators and textile designers, painters and packaging designers, marketers and stay-at-home moms. Some have design degrees, and others are participating in Minted competitions to learn design for the first time. They share a deep love for creative expression, personal development, risk-taking, and most importantly, paying it forward by helping each other.
Every time I visit the site I find something I love, and this last visit brought me to this beautiful (yet minimal) card celebrating three things that we could really use more of in our house: joy, peace, and a whole lotta love!
Speaking of love, look at my kids. Seriously. That baby’s face. I could stare at that guy all day long!
I’m not normally that person, but it’s only November 2 and I have more than half of my Christmas presents picked out. I have my Christmas cards and decorations from Minted decided on. I have determined the values that will guide me through the rest of the year.
Now I can spend the next several weeks appreciating what I have and the things that I have to offer to others. I hope y’all will join me as we talk about these things in more details over the next several weeks.
In the meantime, let’s talk about being prepared: What are your plans for finishing up 2014? Are you a procrastinator or do you like to get things out of the way ahead of time? If you want to see the Organized Christmas guide to thinking about values, you can find it here.