Confessions of a holiday slacker

It seems the Christmas season has snuck up and found me ill-prepared once again. I blame this predicament on my disdain for retailers putting up Christmas decorations before Halloween and trying to rush me into the season. I blame political correctness run amok in a country where people say “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas” so as not to offend anyone and then look at me when I reply “Merry Christmas” to them as if I’ve just made a disparaging remark about their mother. (Incidentally, if someone were to wish me a Happy Hanukkah or Happy Kwanzaa, I would not be offended in the least–but that’s another rant for another day.) But first and foremost, I blame my own well-honed proclivity for procrastination and devastating laziness.

I have varying levels of holiday decorating. Level One decorating consists of outside lights adorning the house, wreaths on not only the front door but also wreaths on each window facing the street, a small wooden nativity scene, a large snowman surrounded by three ice skating penguins with blue lights encircling the entire scene to mimic a frozen pond, and a wooden Santa to greet visitors at the front door. On the inside of the house, there’s the fully decorated tree and mantle, a Christmas village spanning six shelves of the built-ins in the family room, a fancy nativity scene atop the piano, personalized miniature trees in each child’s room as well as a snowman themed tree in the kitchen. There are also wreaths on each of the french doors leading into the office off the family room and Christmas plates replacing the plates normally displayed in the dining room. Dispersed throughout the house are Christmas themed candles and various trinkets.

It should be noted that Level One Christmas decorating has not been achieved since I let my prescription for Adderall lapse over four years ago.

Level Two decorating consists of MOST of the above, less the kids’ trees, the snowman tree, the Christmas village and the wreaths on the office doors. For me, this is still a fairly daunting process.

Neither level was achieved this year. I’m at Level Three. Although if one were to rank by output of effort and number of decorations, it would be more accurate to describe it as Level 7, 8 or 27.

Oh, I’ve got the essentials done.

The tree is up and decorated…

Even though there are just as many left off the tree this year than there are on the tree.

The mantle is decorated.

The centerpiece, the reason for the season is prominently displayed. Not only the fancy set on the piano,

but also the small wooden nativity set in the front yard.

And in a display worthy of a Crap at my Parent’s House honorable mention is this bathroom display:

Visitors will be greeted by a friendly Santa Claus made by my neighbors a few years ago,

And I will be greeted each morning with incessant barking from Buddy Love the Dog,

who is convinced that there is an intruder on the other side of the sidelight window who just won’t leave no matter how loudly and often he’s barked at.

Do I feel a guilty about my lack of enthusiasm for decorating this year? A little, but not too much. For me, it’s the process of decorating as much as the final results that I enjoy. This year, there’s been lots of out of town business trips and even more after school activities that take all of us away from home, so there’s not been much time for putting up the Christmas decorations.

The stockings are hung by the chimney with care.

The tree is up and even has a few presents under it.

So rather than stress about all that could have been done that wasn’t, I’m simply going to call what we’ve done enough and enjoy what’s left of the Christmas holiday season.

Just as soon as I finish my Christmas shopping…

How’s your season going so far?

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