There is a debate raging, and I believe it’s worth addressing. The question: is it too early to decorate for Christmas?
People in favor of decorating early say the season is too short, and they want to enjoy it to the fullest, for the longest period of time possible. People against it say Thanksgiving comes first, and it deserves to be celebrated before Christmas in a classic “stay in your lane” debate. One holiday at a time. We just got past Halloween. Let’s take them in their proper order and do the classic season that Christmas starts on Black Friday, and we’ll bust that holiday stuff out of the shed then.
Personally, I’m the latter. I believe every season, every holiday, and every day even has it’s own special place and season. You should appreciate what you have, while you have it. Right now, Thanksgiving and fall decorations adorn my home and office. I’ll consider Christmas decorations Thanksgiving week, and thereafter. It was a long, hot, hard summer for us, and we want to enjoy the fall and transition to a (hopefully) better season a day at a time.
That being said, I also believe in planning. I started my Christmas crafting in September, and I started Christmas shopping this past weekend. I don’t have a lot of people to buy for, but it makes sense to plan ahead from a time and financial perspective. Cross stitching takes time, so you have to plan months in advance to make sure the projects are done on time. I want to enjoy the process of selecting the right gift for each person on my list, without the stress of rushing to “get it done.” I’ve said this many times before and I’ll say it again: when you have a home and a full time job, effective time and money management is a must. You must plan ahead because you never know what life will throw at you. Calendars fill up fast this time of year, and reality is no respecter of persons. That early holiday shopping has been a blessing to me because it was done in past years when unpleasantness like death or illness paid a call during the holiday season. Most of the time it’s just a stress relief to get it done early, but from time to time it turned out good for practical reasons.
I believe the bottom line is to do what’s right for you, but be respectful of others who might need or prefer other methods. Maybe some early decorators have a deployed family member who won’t be home for Christmas. Maybe somebody is dealing with an illness or injury that requires early planning, or skipping the decorating altogether. Maybe that Scrooge that doesn’t “feel it” this year is grieving a recent loss. Maybe that too-enthusiastic elf wannabe finally had their breakthrough, and feels the celebration of the season for the first time in years. Maybe the early decorator wasn’t able to decorate last year because of a life transition or health issue that prevented them from doing it, and they want to enjoy it to the fullest this year. We all have our times and seasons, and you never know where a person might be. Grant them the grace to be where they’re at, and enjoy doing (or not doing) it your way. There is no right way to “do” the holidays. It might come each year, but every year is a varied and unique as daily life itself. Sometimes in small ways, sometimes in big ways, but always in some way.
Yes, the stores start the decorating and carols too soon, and it can be a bit shocking if you aren’t on board yet.I was completely shocked when I went out on Monday, and saw how many stores and businesses already have their Christmas decorations up. They went straight from Halloween to Christmas. But take heart. It’s just a couple of months, and then life will be good and boring again come January.
That’s all today. Take care, and have a great rest of the week.