Holy smokes! I just realized what date was on the calendar! YIKES!!!!!!!!!!
With Christmas being less than a week away, and with some big shot duties I have at the Kindergarten Christmas Party (har, har...get excited for Christmas BINGO!!), along with family dinner after family dinner after family dinner, I am fearful my postings this week and next will be few and far between. Thanks to the longevity of our family, as well as some out of state visitors, we'll be in and out and in and out and north and south and all around!
During this time of the year, however, I am constantly under self-imposed deadlines. I create unnecessary stress, worrying about rather ridiculous things, like making sure my house is "just right" for Santa (does he really care if the bathroom floor is mopped?), all the while trying to keep up with the craziness that is Christmas programs, Christmas parties, wrapping, refereeing, protecting the tree from a toddler, and maintaining our schedule and life on the farm.
Just recently, when I was starting to freak out, I realized I had plastered on my mom's signature "Christmas Smile." Your mom probably had one too. Our mom would be seen around the holidays with this crazy, wild-eyed smile before any family gathering, and then could be found sneaking in her yearly sip of Bartles and James before many a family Christmas (sorry, Mom). Does anyone else do this?
I know this "faking it" smile is ridiculous. No life is like a Pottery Barn catalogue, nor is it a TV show. This is a wondrous time of year, and should come without worrying about unnecessary details. I love, love, love Christmas, especially now that I see it through the eyes of my young kids. Thanks to my kids and the daily workings of the farm, I am constantly reminded that the details of Christmas should be considered just details. Because we have livestock and little kids (who are a lot more similar than you would think), each day is essentially the same. Chores, feedings, and the like have to be completed for our farm and our family to operate smoothly, regardless of how many wreaths I put out or presents I have wrapped. Cows and kids don't care. The big picture is to keep the big picture in mind. Therefore, a lot of my details that I freak out about need to remain just details.
I have to constantly step back and force myself to keep this bigger picture in mind. We are blessed to have been blessed by a baby born to save us, and we are surrounded by the miracle of the sacrifice He made on the cross.
I know, I know, I went from sassy and smarty to spiritual in one single post, but my hope is that this season, while you are enjoying (or pretending to enjoy) your family, doing your life--whether its mundane or exciting that day--, remember that we are blessed to be here. We are blessed with health and family and choices and freedoms, and, most importantly, a life that is and can continue to be amazing.
I hope you all have a Merry Christmas, and know that I pray for you all to be healthy and safe during this season, and that you are able to grit your teeth and plaster on your Christmas Smile during this most wonderful time of the year.
photography by Kara Kamienski Photography, Washington, IL. Hire her, she's amazing.