This post is my contribution to the Green Moms Carnival, hosted this month at Eco-Novice.
I view the Friday after Thanksgiving as the official start of the Christmas season, but you won’t find me staying up until 3am for sales or fighting my way through the hustle and bustle at the mall. At our house, the Friday after Thanksgiving is Red and Green, not Black.
I love Christmas, which many of my close friends find to be an interesting fact about me because I’m not a religious person. I used to identify myself as non-religious, but I have always loved to celebrate holidays with my family so I now consider myself to be a secular Christian. This is one of my favorite times of year when the gift-giving and Joshua’s excitement give me special joy in my heart. To start off the spirit of the season, we spend the long Thanksgiving weekend getting festive.
On Friday, while some of my friends and family are out shopping, we’re home in our jammies. We have a warm fire and I put on a Christmas movie. My favorite is National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, so that’s always first. Then we proceed to take out and set up our decorations. The advent calendar garland, the Christmas village, a candle in each window, stockings, garlands and lights on the mantel and stairway, mistletoe and wreathes. We can listen to music, drink hot chocolate, do some Christmas crafts and sit in front of the fire.
We do wait a few weeks for the tree though, which we get from my family’s farm.
My brothers always come up with some neat decorations at the farm, too.
I also use this weekend as time to take pictures and order Christmas cards. Last year I strung up lights on a pine tree outside, picked out a festive outfit for Joshua, piled his red wagon with teddy bears and recruited my mom’s assistance and photographic expertise. It was chilly, but I was so pleased with the photos we got of Joshua. Inspired by my mom’s tradition, I started a Christmas scrapbook that I will add a few pages to each year. I can take that out and reminisce about seasons past. For this year’s photo shoot, I have visions of Joshua sitting on my brother’s red and gray tractor. I have to find the perfect winter cap for that picture first, though!
The weekend after Thanksgiving is also the time of year that I get into the Christmas spirit here on the blog. This will be my fourth year hosting a Christmas Cookie Recipe Swap, and I have plans to reinvent it as a blog hop. I’m working on a winter/Christmas blog design that will debut that weekend as well.
Christmas is not about consumerism for us. We absolutely do buy presents but are not focused on the “stuff” that we’re getting and giving. It’s really about love, family, and the beauty of the season.