I’ve always been the type who prefer simplicity over extravagance or boldness. I don’t really like big parties and loud music (except when it’s my high school batch’s homecoming). I prefer cafes over bars. Cozy restos over gourmet and fancy ones. Generic and yet personal over chic brands.
It’s November already and Christmas is just around the corner. 50 days to be exact! Usually, by this time, I already have more or less some ideas on how to go about our Holiday season … different from last year’s. What dishes to prepare for Noche Buena. What kinds of gifts to buy for the persons in our Christmas list and where to, more or less, get them. Where to have get-togethers with our different groups of friends. What homemade Christmas tree decors to do this time (Oh! This has been quite a tradition in the past years!) I don’t know, but I’m feeling a bit “more laid back” this year. The Holidays has always been such a hectic season and I’m being reminded (again) that I shouldn’t make ourselves go with the mad rush and fall prey to commercialism that Christmas never fails to bring. The reminder becomes stronger and stronger every year. Is it because I’m getting older (a bit of denial here)? Or is it because our girls are in their pre-teen and teen stage that they are no longer the toy stores’ main target market for the biggest toy sale season of the year?
It’s just making me think. HARDER. How should we celebrate Christmas this 2012? It is quite a challenge now to think of more meaningful, concrete ways, most especially when everyone in the whole world seems to be synchronized and going through the same retail rush year after year.
The mindmap, posted on the wall in front of me, which I did at the start of 2012, gave me the answer. Simple yet Significant. That was the theme/central image for my 2012 Goals mindmap and that’s how we’re going to do it this Christmas 2012! Now, I’m inspired. Here are six Simple yet Significant ways that I have in mind to celebrate our Christmas this year:
1. No more Christmas tree. We’ll just have The Nativity/Belen and focus more on it. After all, Christmas is all about the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, and not about how many gifts we have under the tree or how many and what kind we’d be receiving.
2. More quality time to spend with family members and friends. Reunions and get-togethers need not be something obligatory. Time to really engage in conversations and listen to what another person is saying, young or old. Listen…Connect…Engage.
3. Prepare/Eat more healthful dishes. More greens, less of the sweets and bad calories. And be thankful that we have something on the table! With all the get-togethers, we actually may be having more than what our digestive system can take 🙂
4. Gifts need not be expensive. The more personal it is, the better. And we don’t have to force our budget to buying gifts we cannot afford for the people in our Christmas list. Buy local, too!
5. Schedule a Skype/Face Time/Magic Jack session with loved ones in another country or location. (I’m sure Arielle and Kayla’s Lolo and Lola, Titos, Titas, Ninongs, Ninangs, and cousins in the U.S. would be excited to talk with and see them on the computer screen.)
6. Include in our list, presents for our house helpers, drivers, laundry woman, and others. It may even be good to allot a bigger budget for them for their year-round services. Make it the other way around? More budget for them than our family members, friends, colleagues who can well afford and are already blessed. (Hmmm…this is something to discuss with my husband and girls.)
How about you? Have you already thought of how you’ll be celebrating Christmas this year?