My Favorite Time of Year

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” – William Arthur Ward

Christmastime and Wine
Christmastime and Wine

December is my favorite time of year. I’ve been so tied up with accomplishing my goals and getting organized during the holiday chaos that I haven’t had time to sit down and write. The little bit of rain we have right now immediately sparked my interest to whip out my computer and start typing. It triggers something creative in me every time I hear it hit the ground. So, when I heard the rain on our patio, I knew I needed to get a blog post up.

This past weekend, one of my best friends and I decided to watch Christmas movies in our pjs with some wine. It wasn’t anything extravagant, but it didn’t have to be. It was fun because I had a good time with a good friend I’ve known since high school. (Shoutout to Katie!)

We wanted to hangout and relax because the Christmas craziness had felt like it was already sinking in. It was the last day of November and my mind was running on low fuel thinking about all the stuff I had to get done. I felt like I had too much to accomplish until I remembered that the “little things” can become the “big things”. This time of year is not about presents. It’s about being present.

It’s somewhat bittersweet for me because even though I love this time of year, there are plenty of people—and companies—who put a different focus on the holidays. It’s more about material than it is about family and coming together to celebrate all the wonderful things in our lives. I hope everyone can start to understand that the holidays are commercialized because profit is the main concern. We are bombarded with advertisements and things we are told we need when they’re really just things we *want.*

It’s understandable why the holidays are a struggle for some people because they are trained to focus on gifts. After the fires and tragedies traveled throughout our hometowns, they reminded us again that there are too many people in need. Rather than focusing on our long wish lists and stressing on getting our loved ones the perfect gifts, what if we put the focus on other people who have much less than we do?

Our wish lists usually include things that won’t last forever on them. We’ll end up giving the items away, outgrowing them, or forgetting we even have them. After evacuating during the fires, it hit me hard: I don’t need a lot of material items. There are a lot of things I want, but a lot of things I know I don’t need.

Why am I going to request that I have even more unneeded items for Christmas? I would take making valuable memories with my family over gifts that I’ll probably forget about or give away at some point.

That’s why I love this time of year. I can spend time with my friends and family. I can watch Christmas movies in my polar bear pjs with my best friend. I can remember all the reasons why I am grateful for where I am in my life today, but I can also do my part in helping others. This is the season of giving gratitude. It’s about feeling it and expressing it.

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