Hello! How are you doing today. The weather here is beautiful; if you can, go take some time to enjoy the sunshine!
I want to give you a few more practical hints about these holidays, and some suggestions about making things work well. Then we can talk about your food.
First. Make some provisional decisions. Are you cooking a family meal on Thanksgiving? What about the other holiday ties? How much will you need to be doing?
Go to Dollar Tree or Party city. You may find some Halloween decorations still, if you need/want them.
Now look at Christmas and Hannukah. Dollar Trees and Party Cities will have a good supply NOW. Do not choose any pattern with the year on it; you will not be able to use it as a leftover. Buy what you need and maybe a bit more. After the pandemic, more of us are up for holiday visiting and being able to toss the plates and cups makes life easier, cleanup faster, time with loved ones greater.
What about the other things you may want? Yankee Candlle still has 40% off some items; and all your favorite stores are calling for Black Friday to last all week. Make a list of the things YOU need, then consider other people.
Are there some things that you buy for someone every year? Get them now. Are there some things you could give to each member of a group (secretaries? Grandchildren?) Can a group of you plan a surprise for your boss? And let someone else do the part that takes up time?
Buy several of an item that is on sale now; like the insulated beverage holders we all now carry in different colors. Now you have something anyone can enjoy; they are not real expensive, and they are thoughtful easy gifts.
And what about the holiday spread? Every store may run out of something simple, like garlic powder, and that extra trip just makes an annoying “something else” to do. So, check your cupboards and recipes; get the supplies you need in early. See if you can find time to make some extra portions of your favorite meals and freeze them for the times you are too tired or too busy to cook.
Now about you and those precious feelings:
We all have feelings this time of year – right or wrong – good or bad – positive or negative – or “I wish I could forget that” – or “I wish I could go back to that wonderful time and space”. The feelings will be up to visit, on time and on schedule; and how you handle them can make or break your holiday happiness.
Buy a special journal for them. Write till it is all done; share it with a trusted adviser, and let the negative pieces go out to be recycled into positive ones.
Now, what do you really wish to have happen on these special precious days that end 2022? How would you like this precious period to end for you? What will make it a joyful blessed time for you?
And if you are thinking, “No, it is going to be awful. I cannot fix it; it cannot be made good”; now ask yourself why. And ask what you can do to make it better for others as well as for you.
It is not your job to sacrifice all your holiday joy to meet others’ demands. If you decide you need to sacrifice yourself so others can be happy, please change your mind and visit your nearest CODA group.
Really. Reach deep into your heart and soul, tradition or religion, till you find the really, really wise person that you truly are, and make some choices that will give you joy this holiday season. Then let’s work on what you could realistically do to make the season reasonably joyful if not incredibly wonderful.
The purpose of these exercises is to give you the time to enjoy the most precious time of the year. These are all spiritual holidays and it’s important that we separate the day-to-day requirements from our own spiritual growth. Starting next week, we will start talking about the spirituality of the holidays as they come one by one.
Blessings to you,
PS Yes, recipes are coming. If you want to contribute, please send me a copy.
PPS Yes, Emergency Road Service, our surviving the holidays in a healthy way course, will begin before Thanksgiving. Hope you can plan to attend.
PPPs Remember, the session prices increase December 1st. If you have questions or problems, please call the office. We will be happy to help.