Thursday, November 18, 2010

It’s “That” Time of Year Again

Whether you are a fan of the holidays or not, they’re unavoidable! For me, when I start to see the Salvation Army folks crazily ringing their bells for donations, I know we’re knee deep into the holiday season. When I see the cartons of eggnog popping up in the refrigerator section in the grocery store, I know we’re “loosening belt buckles” for the approaching holiday season! And lastly, and I really hate to admit this, when I start playing my Christmas CD’s in the car while driving, it’s over, the holidays are definitely here!! And I also see people slowly starting to go crazy. I’ve already seen it in some of the eyes of my customers! Scary.

Have fun this year. Yes, “you”, have fun this year! Forget the perfect gifts, forget the perfect dinners, forget the perfect parties and all the perfect stuff in general. After all, we all know life itself isn’t perfect! Why not take some time to celebrate the holidays with friends and family. Make things easy on yourself this year so you don’t walk around with those crazy eyes I mentioned above. When you look in the mirror, you may not see crazy eyes, but I guarantee others do, especially those of us that work retail! This idea of “perfection” never seizes to amaze me. During the week of the horrible wild fires here in SoCal, we had a customer obsessed with purchasing the perfect pillow! I’m serious. She was obsessed with a pillow while hundreds lost their homes in Southern California. I don’t get it, I just don’t get it.

This year make a difference in your life and others. Simplify and enjoy the company of others. After all, love and friendship is a gift itself. Go out to lunch or dinner with a friend or relative and pick up the tab. Let that be your gift to them. Just think how much less stressful that could be and how much more fun. You get to enjoy someone’s company while someone else cooks and serves you food. You get to engage in conversation in a relaxed environment and there are no dirty dishes to clean, no wrapping paper or boxes to recycle. It can be that easy if you think about it. And may I suggest, a shopping trip to Country Roads before that lunch or dinner would really make your celebration all that much more special! Celebrate the New Year by simply remembering there’s another 365 days ahead filled with endless opportunity to make a difference in the world.

I know the holidays are hard for some of you, and there are many people that get depressed over the holidays. Find that positive in your life. Remember what warms your heart and makes you smile. The holidays are much like life. . . we can focus on the negative, depressing things or we can look for the positive things that are good in our lives. You know, last Christmas I had just lost my mom a few months prior and my dad had come over for Christmas dinner. He was a mess. My dad missed my mom and his Alzheimer’s was really taking his mind over. When he left, he almost completely fell off my front porch but thankfully we caught him. He passed away less than two months after that. If I only think about “that” Christmas last year, I would be sad. But instead, I think of others things. For example, one Christmas when I was in college my family went over to some friends of my dad’s, to their house for Christmas dinner. My dad wasn’t much of a drinker, a few beers here and there. That particular Christmas, his friend, who was much younger, started pouring Irish Whiskey for him and my dad. Well, you can imagine the outcome. As my dad walked towards this family’s beautifully decorated Christmas tree in their living room that sat in front of a huge glass window in front of their house, my dad tripped. The tree, the lights, the ornaments AND my dad ended up on his friend’s front lawn! My dad got up, with Christmas lights and tinsel dangling from his body and simply said, “did I do that”? I still laugh when I think about that Christmas. So my wish to all of you is celebrate the love and joy of the holiday season with those that mean the most to you. Life is a continuous journey and there will be some bumps along the way. But that’s why we have helmets, right?
Happy Holidays to You All!

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