Angels – The first messengers of Jesus’ birth. They heralded the good news for all mankind – and they sang loud and clear.
Baking – I enjoy making, sharing and eating Christmas cookies. It’s fun receiving them too!
Cleaning – is not optional but you can focus on the main living areas if you don’t have company coming. Nobody is going to look in your closets or under the bed (except the kids).
Deck the Halls – The 3 main areas you should decorate if you don’t have time or the money are the tree, the Door and the Mantle or table. (however I tend to deck the whole downstairs)
Enjoy – What is the point if you run yourself ragged and don’t enjoy the celebration? Savor the memories! Remember Emmanuel means “God with us.”
Food & Fa-la-la Every holiday in America seems to include food. Make the favorites and forget the experiments. If you have a big gang coming – use paper and forget the china!!!
Gifts – Santa promises a gift if you are good, NOT that you will get everything you ever dreamed of. Being thoughtful and creative is best. Shorten your lists if need be or have a “Yankee Swap”.
Humor – Try not to be so uptight. Laugh at yourself and the foibles around you. It is really OK – no one will remember if the cake fell or your furnace died. (I know because the oil man had to fix ours one Christmas and the kids paid no attention to that nice man!)
Invitation- you may get many invitations during the holidays but you do not have to say yes to them all. Most of us already have extra concerts, programs and family obligations on the calendar. Do not over extend yourself or your family – it only makes everyone grumpy.
JESUS – He is THE reason for the season. Read the Christmas story to your family. Set up a manger that the children can touch. Have a birthday cake for Jesus.
King – Listen to the Hallelujah chorus –“King of kings and Lord of lords!” It will lift your spirits!
Lights – There are many beautiful light displays to enjoy. The bright lights make the gloomy short days of December so much better and remind us that Jesus is the Light of the World.
Music – Listen to music in your home and car. Sing along! Sing with your children. I can’t imagine Christmas without singing carols.
Noel – means Christmas. It comes from an old Latin word meaning “to be born.”
Open – your hearts to the One who loves you most. Open your home and open your arms for hugging.
Peace – Shalom means wholeness, wellness and inner peace. Jesus is the Prince of Peace.
Quiet Time – Play games, do puzzles, have some old fashioned fun!
Rest – God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen. Treat yourself to cat naps whenever possible. When we get over tired we lose our cheer and sanity.
Shepherds – were outcasts in their day – dirty and ceremonially unclean. But God came down at Christmas for even the “least of these.” Sharing with those who are needy is good for our soul and teaches our children to be grateful.
Tree – is more than a decoration to Christians. The tree is a symbol of everlasting life with God. It can also serve as a reminder of the Tree in the Garden of Eden and the tree (cross) Jesus died on.
Unplug – shut the news off! Very little on TV is uplifting. Limit your own time on electronic devices as well as your children. Sometimes the constant input can crank you up instead of calm you down.
Vintage – I sometimes get miffed that toys I played with are now called “Vintage”. Sharing your stories and traditions with each other brings happy memories and laughter. Looking at old photos is also a wonderful way to remember those we loved who are not with us anymore.
Wisemen – The wisemen came from afar with costly gifts seeking the prophesied infant King. Wisemen and women still seek Him.
Xmass – is not offensive to me. The X represents the Greek letter chi, the initial letter in the word Xpiotoc (Christos)
Yuletide – the Christmas season (remember it is only a season!)
Zzzzz– it’s time to take that nap I mentioned. Have a blessed, not stressed, Christmas season everyone!