Tuesday, December 2, 2014


This is the time of year when we talk about what we're gonna do. Bake. Cook. Buy presents. Decorate the house. Travel or invite company over. Shop like mad and spend money we don't have. It's all about expectations--ours and others.

Over the years I did the entire baking/shopping/buying/traveling/decorating gamut--mostly because I strived to meet someone else's expectations. We do everything we can to make sure our children, our parents and families, our friends are not disappointed. Somewhere along the line we give up thinking about what we want.

This year the hunk and I are staying home. We don't exchange gifts as there isn't anything we want or need. We'll cook what we want--I confess it will mostly be distressingly healthy. On Christmas Eve we'll have our traditional tacos, of course.

Christmas morning, long after most folks have tumbled out of bed and ripped the wrappings off presents, we'll have a leisurely breakfast, listen to Christmas carols, and putz around. Later in the day we'll cook dinner. Maybe we'll watch something on Netflix.

I don't know if we'll decorate or not. It all depends on whether we're ambitious enough to haul out the tree and ornaments. We may only set up the Nativity we've had for the last thirty years. And some candles.

Now I understand this would not be an ideal Christmas for most folks. And in the past, I might have been disappointed to bypass the company, the decorating, the baking. But the truth is I'm ready for a peaceful, non-demanding holiday with my spouse. I suspect our expectations change as we age and move on to a new stage in life. Maybe, just maybe, we don't pause to reflect and consider how our expectations might have changed over the transitions.

Some folks confess they don't have the 'holiday spirit'. I don't think that's the problem, but rather I believe those folks might be hankering for a different style celebration. The trappings don't make the holiday. The heart does. This year...follow your heart.

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