Christmas Captive

I don't know if it's a cyclical thing, or just this year, but I'm pretty much "ba-humbug" about Christmas. Because I'm sure you'd love to share in my misery, I've decided to write a list of all my complaints that contribute to my un-festive mood.

Here's my top 5  list of why this season is a snooze this year:

Possibly the biggest problem, besides my own lack of energy and enthusiasm, is that my kids are getting older. Although Eli is still enchanted with the season, Grace and Clare (especially Grace) are just no fun any more. They both figured out the whole Santa farce and so our days before Christmas are now just the same as any other except we have a lot more clutter around the house: lights, candles, figurines, chocolate Advent calendars. 

All our family lives far, far away and Adam works on Christmas Eve so we won't be traveling. This means the meal and celebratory festivities that make Christmas great are all on me. I have to somehow muster up the energy and enthusiasm to actually provide a special meal on Christmas. This task is about as exciting for me as breaking down all the cardboard boxes from Amazon.

The third problem this year is that our traditions are pretty much set. I'm no longer inspired by mommy blogs to figure out what our family will do to make the season special. In fact, blog browsing only makes me feel even worse about how things are going this year. How those moms maintain such a high level of Christmas spirit is beyond me.

4 And then there is shopping. The stores are jammed packed with Christmas consumers who all seem to have purposeful plans while I wander around wishing I had actually brought a grocery list. We did all our shopping online this year and all our gifts are wrapped and ready to go (this was all because of Adam's get-up-and-go mentality which forced me to comply). Having all that done is great and would have been especially fantastic if I could focus on the pure joy of our dear Savior's birth, except, well, I'm not.

Technology is another problem. Who needs Christmas and the excitement of gifts and traditions when we are all perfectly content looking at a screen. What more do we need except food (and the sugar, butter, and salt laden food is readily available this time of year). What more could a person want than to be a slave to the desires of the body? Wow-how's that for cynicism?


I could probably write ten more reasons this season is so crummy this year, but it's probably evident that my bad attitude is the real problem. I'm not sure I can pull out of it this year, however, there is still the hope of next year. That's the nice thing about traditions and seasons, they come around again and we get another chance.

In the meantime, that little Baby King who is Hope itself has come, is coming and will come again. Even in the midst of my personal dark and clouded Christmas, His light still shines. He comes as a baby. He comes with new hope, new peace and new joy, way back then, every year and all the time.

~O come, O come, Emmanuel and ransom captive Israel~

That's me. I'm captive Israel. Jesus, save me from myself. -Amen


  1. i just love you. it sounds like the particular constellation of ages and interests and trappings going along with this particular holiday season are just perfectly wrong for you, and you know what, it's okay to feel this way. give yourself a gift, and let it be okay. and by the way, there is no real reason there needs to be some big meal. stuff them with bacon and cinnamon rolls out of a tube for brunch, like my mom used to do with us, and start a new tradition - picnic on the living room floor for christmas dinner. my dad got my mom a picnic basket one christmas, and we were little kids and *needed it to be used right away, and a tradition was born. sandwiches, potato salad and fruit salad from the deli. paper plates. gasp! i know what you mean about the traditions being set, but i think new ones will still come along. maybe there is a new one waiting for your older, bigger kids, to help them be more outwardly minded, as older kids sometimes need help being. another one my parents did with us as older kids was they started a secret santa where we each secretly did nice things for one family member and then got that person a special gift we opened on christmas eve. or save that for next year. my brothers and i (also around that age) started a treasure hunt for our parents, which also became a tradition. we were all about wacky traditions like that. for you, though, i think a candlelit hot bath might be a nice new tradition to start. i know i already shared that i am letting myself off the hook with christmas this year, and our traditions are seriously hampered by everything being in storage. i said screw it to christmas cards. i wouldn't say i am bah humbugging, i am still feeling the spirit, but i am trying to let the pressure be waaaayyy off. i am thinking of buying tamales for that big christmas meal. :) i think it's about giving ourselves permission to not be all pinterest all the time. we all have our moments of greatness, and we all have our moments where we just can't muster the energy. just allow it and know it's gonna pass. love you.

    1. Wow, mb, thanks for your super long and awesomely encouraging comment. It's a scattering agates record!! You are so right about so many things. Why am I fretting so much? I'm not sure how or why I set my perfection bar so high and then it always falls on me and I get crushed under its weight. Your simple ideas were so simple and doable and fun. But most of all you made me feel okay and loved with your words. Words are important to me (as I can imagine they are to you). We're word nerds...werd nerds...word nords...anyway I'm sending my love right back at you. Xoxo.


I've been getting weird comments. One guy was trying to save my soul since I'm Catholic! So, thanks for the comment, but I'll have to check it before it gets posted. And, I have to add, THANKS for commenting. It supports my blog habit.