This is the fifth article in the Editing Life series.
Have you ever noticed how holidays…all of them…are really getting out of hand? For instance, Halloween. We made our costumes (to fit over snowsuits) and went trick-or-treating for one piece of candy per house when I was a child. Now people give out handfuls of candy to children garbed in expensive costumes while surrounded by fog machines, lights and decorations. And often the adults are costumed too.
Children’s birthday parties now have entertainment, hors d’oeuvres, and gift bags…for the attendees.
Don’t even get me started on Christmas.
Before you write me off as a killjoy, let me explain that I am not disparaging the holidays and special events. I just think they have become too dependent on “stuff”.
Why is this an area for editing? Because a holiday can take on a life of its own, requiring weeks of preparation and a huge outlay of cash. My editing the holidays, I bring them back in line with my expectations and abilities.
Setting Limits On Holidays
I have made a conscious effort to really cut back on holidays. I do this by setting limits.
Gifts Don’t Have To Be Excessive
For holidays that gifting is requisite, I make sure to set the expectations up front. For instance, my daughter really wanted a Nintendo DSI. She was told that if she asked for that, she would not be receiving any other gifts from us. So she wasn’t disappointed when she didn’t receive more.
Activities Can Be Modest
Activities don’t have to be over the top. For my daughter’s last birthday party, we gave her a choice: she could have a sleepover with up to four girls (the limit of my floor space), a during-the-day birthday party with outdoor activities and old-fashioned party games, or a day out with a friend where we would go to a movie, visit Build-A-Bear and go out to dinner. All of the activities are manageable from a logistics standpoint.
By editing my holidays I make the direction rather than being directed by the event.
Do you edit holidays? Share below.
Photo by wolfcry0
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