New York and London among other cities in both countries are decked out for the holidays. And that's to say nothing of the famous storefront windows all aglow. But look beyond the seasonal window treatments at Macy's and you'll quickly find a different story. In corporate America, everything is "happy holidays". Ads refer to "holiday shopping", end-of-year office soirees are "holiday parties" and kids' school concerts this time of year are "holiday concerts". You get the idea.
Even at the Guardian, when we put up our Christmas tree in the New York office, the first thing one of our interns said was, "Where's the menorah?
It's the "politically correct" question. Evergreens and menorahs go hand in hand in most public places in the US. Some offices have gone a step further on the PC scale and simply done "winter wonderland" themed decorations. They have silver, gold and white lights aplenty, but no red and green anything.
In short, snow globes are fine, Santa is not. An annual survey that came out last week revealed just how conflicted Americans are on whether it's better to say "Merry Christmas" or "Happy Holidays" this time of year. Half of America prefers one term and half the other.
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However, in a business or public setting, nearly two-thirds of those under 30 feel it's better to wish someone the more generic Happy Holidays. It's about trying to be polite in an increasingly diverse society. Be honest. Is Christmas contributing to your financial strain the rest of the year? If so, take a step back in your spending. Set a realistic budget and stick to it. You could give similar people similar gifts…say, all of your grandparents get a framed family photo. Many people follow a rule like this:.
There are so many gift idea out there for minimalists and kids , not to mention all of the clutter-free gift options out there.
Once you have cut out the excess, it is great to replace it all with something more meaningful to you. Start a new tradition that better aligns with the mindset shift you are making this year!
You could involve your kids in gift-buying this year. You could make one or two favorite cookies with your kids this year instead of baking several different kinds on your own.
What about doing a service project to help those in need? Or, you could donate money to a good cause. You could even do something fun as a family instead of buying each other gifts.
There are so many great traditions that you could start that either put you in the right mindset or help minimize the clutter that Christmas can cause. Christmas time can be a magical season again when we choose to do something more meaningful! Finally, another key way to have a more minimalist Christmas is to put people before things. This Christmas, look for ways to put people first…even in your gift-giving. Focus on blessing each person you give a gift to this year.
Focus on giving instead of receiving. Help your kids put others first by writing Christmas lists for others instead of themselves. Focus on cherishing the people at gatherings rather than the gifts you receive or the food you eat.
Is getting gifts fun? Sure is! Is enjoying good food together a crime? Absolutely not. Focus on communicating gratitude for the precious gifts you have been given. If you are a Christ-follower, that includes remembering the gift of Jesus, his salvation and grace, in all that we do this holiday season.
By focusing on blessing, giving, cherishing, and communicating gratitude, you are sure to enjoy this Christmas season more than any other.
I only do those things that I like doing and that mean something to me. For example, I keep an Advent wreath, and I do not put up a Christmas tree. We live with two rescue and senior terrier-mix dogs who stay mostly indoors. Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to primary sidebar Skip to footer. Comments We added to the Christmas movie night…we have themes. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published.
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