During our engagement, I wrote a post about planning a wedding vs. preparing for marriage. Now, I'm here to talk about the same topic, only this time with a seasonal twist.
In case you haven't looked at a calendar lately, it's November 22nd. Thanksgiving is 4 days away, and Christmas is over a month away. In case you couldn't tell, Thanksgiving comes first. (When is Christmas before Thanksgiving? In the dictionary!*) Maybe it's just me, but I'm seeing more Christmas decorations in November than I ever have before. I hear bits of many Christmas songs on the radio these days, and most stores are fully decked out for December 25th. I am a firm believer in giving Thanksgiving its proper recognition--it's my second favorite holiday and one that is too often overlooked as just the start of Christmas season.
Friday night found me painting a Christmas ornament and then sewing a Christmas stocking while watching a movie with my husband. Is that in conflict with what I just wrote about celebrating Thanksgiving? I don't think so, and here's why: preparing and celebrating are different. So while I may be preparing for Christmas (sewing, thinking about what I want to bake and budgeting for gifts), you won't find me listening to Christmas music** or decorating my house in evergreens and tinsel just yet. (God help me if I ever decorate with tinsel. No offense.) And you know what? I've found that "confining" my Christmas celebration to a shorter time of year makes it that much more special. Christmas marks the end of Advent, a period of a waiting. Thus, December 25th is a day that starts our celebration, not ends it.
*Thank you cheesy childhood jokes.
** Just another plug for Behold the Lamb of God. Best Christmas music EVER.