Christmas Day has come and gone and I'm already thinking about how to make next year more joyous and less hectic. I don't know if that's actually possible, but I know this much - I need to change my way of preparing for the holidays. The older I become, the less I seem to embrace change, but I'm going to call this my self-preservation strategy.
I'm sure many women feel as I do at holiday time. We have too much to do and too little time in which to complete all our tasks. Many times I've asked for help and tried to delegate some items to my spouse. Sometimes that worked - most of the time it didn't. My spouse often said I didn't need to do all the things I had on my lists. He admonished I was "making work" for myself, but my perception (right or wrong) was that he simply didn't want to be asked or expected to help. It's always been my contention most men want to "step into Christmas" - to borrow my dear cousin's phrase.
So . . . after all these years of preparing for the holidays in the ways I thought best, I've finally reached the conclusion change is needed. If I'm to be responsible for indoor decorating, meal planning, cooking, baking, cleaning, gift-buying, card-sending, and most of the wrapping, then I need to find ways to do those things more efficiently and with less stress. It's not going to be easy to let go of my long-held notions of what elements are needed for a "successful" holiday season, but I'm going to try. Stay tuned . . .