As we approach the holidays, there are a lot of things we can have fun with.
This week, your ingredient is: Delight!
For the last couple of years, we’ve thrown a party at my house. This year, there will be one this weekend and the following weekend, I have family coming from out of town for a couple of days and we’ll have the big family party then. I don’t know about you, but for me, the most fun anymore comes from the planning and preparing for these things. I bake, I clean, I decorate, and the most fun? I prepare for the auction. Friends of mine years ago introduced me to this idea and it’s always a huge hit! The concept is simple and especially when the guests have had a bit of Christmas cheer it’s absolutely hilarious!
Yesterday, I went and got most of the prizes. Today, I will decorate and hope to finish my baking. Tomorrow I will start wrapping and making sure I have enough play money for everyone and Friday I’ll go and pick up anything last minute that I need.
Then Saturday night, when everyone’s arrived and settled in, when they’ve all had something to eat and probably a drink or two, we will start the auction! The prizes are mainly gag gifts. Standard are the whoopee cushion and a rubber chicken. There are also several little things that might actually be useful, and there are always a couple of nice prizes in the mix. The beautiful thing is that because everything is wrapped, no one knows what they’re bidding on. Truthfully? I don’t always remember what I’ve wrapped up either so I couldn’t even cheat and tell them if I wanted to. LOL
I delight in other people’s joy and laughter. It lights me up to bring people together and create some fun and memories. I also, of course, love watching the face of a loved one opening a present I’ve made or picked up especially for them. And kids on Christmas morning? Well that is simply beautiful!
Many of the people I know have struggled over the last couple of years. Can’t say exactly what’s going on, but it seems that many of us are having difficult times. If that’s you, what can you do to light yourself up this year? If at all possible, surround yourself with people who care about you and with laughter and fun. And if your struggles are financial? Get creative! Each of the people coming to my party are kicking in $10 toward the cost of the auction prizes so I’m not spending a fortune and neither are they. We’re doing potluck so each family brings an item, and it’s BYOB. Fun doesn’t have to cost a lot of money.
I remember the Christmas when my son was 2 years old. I had no money. So I found a great big package of Matchbox cars for $20 or maybe even less. Then I opened the package and wrapped every single car individually. You should have seen his eyes! I swear he thought he’d won the lottery!
So what lights you up? What could you do for someone else who has less than you or someone who is lonely or someone who has had a really tough year? What could you do that would make children laugh? What could you do that would bring a smile to someone’s face? I was in a checkout line recently and the cashier was obviously having a rough day. People were lined up and I’m sure they hadn’t stopped for hours. So I talked with her for a minute while she was checking me out and asked how she was doing. That was all it took for her to lighten right up.
All of these things are choices. And they’re not even hard ones. My favourite thing about this time of year? That people are more purposeful in their kindness to one another. Also a choice. We all see the people who are running around like mad people and getting more stressed and more angry as they go. That’s not how I choose to spend my time, at least not most of the time, but we all have our days, don’t we?
So this year, as you come up on the holidays, function from a place of kindness and love? Or allow the busy-ness and chaos to overtake you? I plan to relax with some good friends and family I care about as often as possible, share some big belly laughs, and some yummy treats.
What do you choose?