Friday, June 8, 2018

How Important Are Holidays to You?



Holidays

Are you someone who looks forward to and celebrates holidays to the fullest?  I think that most of us have a favorite holiday for specific reasons.  Time off work.  Family time together.  Dressing up.  Giving and receiving gifts.


Remember when you were a kid and it took forever for Christmas to arrive?  Every night you dreamed about that special toy you asked Santa for and hoped you'd get.  You could hardly wait for Halloween to get here so you could wear your new costume and have enough candy to last a month.  I remember hiding my stash so my parents didn't know how much I actually ate.  Thanksgiving can be so exciting with the anticipation of going to grandparents' house for a huge turkey dinner and lots of fun games. But, the best was your birthday -- that special day you didn't have to share with anyone.  It was all about you - gifts for you -- your favorite chocolate cake - and a day off from chores.
gifts

Growing up, birthdays weren't that big of a deal.  Even now, sometimes my daughter has to remind me that it is my birthday.


Christmas dinnerChristmas time is probably my favorite time of year.  I usually have all gifts bought and wrapped by early autumn.  I love baking for the holidays and I'm twitterpated when I think about spending fun time with my grandchildren.  Sadly, Christmas also smacks of unpleasant memories.  My mom died shortly before Christmas when I was a teenager.  I always envied families who had huge gatherings and was disturbed when people complained about having to go "home" for the holidays to see members of their family they didn't like.  Last year a bank teller spent at least five minutes complaining to me about her mother-in-law's turkey.  She refused to eat it because she knew it had been thawed on the counter overnight.  Then a tirade began about how much she disliked 'that' woman.

As much as I love my daughter and her family and am thrilled to spend Christmas with them every year, I also grieve for a very real loss.  Seven years ago our son and his family walked out of our lives right before Christmas.  No explanation.  No reason that we can determine.  We grieved deeply and it felt like our family dynamics would never be the same.  No matter how much time goes by, the wound is deep and raw.  Our son and family live in the same town as we do and I sometimes see them from a distance.  They are unapproachable and this mother's heart is torn apart all over again.  To make matters worse, we have no clue as to why.  

Christmas time is sad for thousands of people and reflected with a high suicide rate at that time of year.  Loneliness plays a big part of this equation.
Halloween pumpkin

As much as I love Christmas and what it represents, I hate Halloween.  I see no reason why grown-ups need to dress up like kids, eat an abundance of high fructose corn syrup treats and celebrate gore and violence.  Yet, I buy 400 pieces of that gross candy and welcome all the tots who come to our door.  It is always interesting to observe the polite children versus the ones who feel entitled.  

My favorite gift for some holidays is a sentimental card.  I save them and read them throughout the year.  Mother's Day.  Valentine's Day.  My birthday.

When people talk about what they are going to do on the next long weekend like Labor Day or the 4th of July, I look forward to getting caught up on my list of things to do without interruption.  Call me crazy or a workaholic but having that extra day or two makes my load that much lighter for the rest of the week or month.

I never figured out why people drink beer and wear green on St. Patrick's Day.  An excuse to party?  
Memorial Day
One day that I believe should be honored - but not celebrated - is Memorial Day.  I said "Happy Memorial Day" to a client last week and he replied, "There is nothing happy about Memorial Day."  I apologized and agreed.  We owe our veterans so much and I am thankful we take this time to recognize that.

New Year's Eve used to be fun but I can barely remember that far back.  It is really just another month end that requires extra book work for the end of the year.


Relax Stress
No, I'm not a scrooge and am glad people have holidays and time off and time with family on these special days.  These days just don't excite me much.  To answer the original question, "What is your favorite and least favorite holiday and why?" I would say that Christmas is my favorite but it comes with sadness.  I don't have a least favorite as most of the others I rarely celebrate.  But, I love dinner parties and will use a holiday as an excuse to plan a party for friends to enjoy, eat tons of great food, and relax.

WHAT ABOUT YOU?  What is your favorite holiday and why?  Do you get excited or depressed around certain ones?

Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This week 10 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts. 

This month my secret subject was "What is your favorite and least favorite holiday and why?  It was submitted by Blogging 911.

Here are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts.  Sit back, grab a cup, and check them all out. See you there:

Baking In A Tornado                            
The Lieber Family Blog              
The Bergham Chronicles              
Southern Belle Charm               
The Blogging 911                            
Cognitive Script                       
My Brand of Crazy                    
Climaxed                                

Photos courtesy of thejournal.ie, new-jersey-leisure-uide.com, hallr.com,thetravelexpert.ie, halloweeh-history.org, northtexaskids.com

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