Thursday, March 31, 2016

Are People Going Overboard During the Holidays or Do People's Opinions Need to Be Thrown Overboard?

Something I have always noticed, yet it is becoming more frequent by the day, people complaining about how and what other people do during the holidays.
 I will start off with the fact that as a child we never believed in Santa, the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, Cupid or any other fictional holiday mascot. However, this wasn't because our parents were constantly down our throats about not believing in fictional characters we just logically knew that there was no such thing. Not to mention being brought up in a Christian household we knew what holidays were about. Right next to the Night Before Christmas and The Nutcracker was The Nativity. We just in general loved everything about the holidays.
Yet, even as a child I remember people that we associated with people that had an issue with putting up a star instead of an angel; having Santa Claus décor; people that did not allow their children to watch The Christmas Carol for fear of having nightmares, the list could go on. We never seemed to run into issues with how we celebrated the holidays. We understand what Easter and Christmas are really about. We understood that Thanksgiving was historical and that Valentine's Day was a made up holiday so that people could buy cutesy heart themed crap.
At Thanksgiving (like everyone else) we ate. At Christmas we celebrate all month long (not like everyone else). There was always an eclectic mix of decorations from handmade nativities, German nutcrackers to vintage 1940s Santa Claus décor. I would say that my parent's house looked like the very embodiment of Christmas, especially in the eyes of a child. At Valentine's Day my dad always got my mom a box of chocolates and a card and always a little something for me (being the only daughter) and for as long as my grandmother was alive she always mailed me and my brothers an envelope of Disney and Looney Tunes Valentine's cards to give out to our friends. At Easter we always had new outfits for church, my grandparents would come over and we would dye eggs and after church we always had an Easter Egg hunt for eggs filled with money. My parents usually had an Easter basket for each of us filled with candies, a toy and usually a book.
My point is that out of all of the holidays Christmas and Easter are the most religious. Remembering throughout the holiday what happened or what it signifies is important. BUT, when people who take it a little more serious or get a little more political about it start criticizing how other people celebrate it or start posting things in Facebook about how people celebrate the holidays and then state why they don't personally do that you have single handedly mistreated the holiday worse than any parent that chooses to indulge in a little Santa Claus fantasy.
It's not a pissing contest. It's not the time to poke at others. It's certainly not the time to push your agenda. If you want to celebrate Christmas by singing hymns everyday and having no tree, no sugar cookies and no stockings then that is your choice, good for you. But, if your neighbor has their house lit out the wazoo, a tree inside and outside, packages covering the living room floor, cookies and candies all month long and Christmas songs (some about the birth of Christ others about Kris Kringle) blaring everyday DON'T take it upon yourself to put a post on Facebook about "The Reason for the Season".  Maybe some parents don't have the funds to do things for their child year round. Maybe they can't afford family vacations, maybe they have special memories from the holiday time, maybe they're just very enthusiastic.  Whatever the reason, I can't think of a LESS Christian way to behave at the holidays then to criticize how someone else celebrates.
I think that there is a fine line between spoiling and holiday indulgence.
If you can acknowledge what Easter represents then buy all means eat a Palmer's hollow chocolate bunny and enjoy it.
If you can being generous and kind hearted to others during Christmas (not just buying the big fancy top of the line toy for your child) but drop a little money in the Salvation Army bucket, smile when you see Christmas lights, be humbled when you watch It's A Wonderful Life or The Christmas Carol then please enjoy your over stuffed stockings, your over abundance of candy and your packages that you probably have too many of and enjoy.
As for the rest of the holidays, some people choose to ignore them, others choose to create a party to celebrate when in reality it's just a reason to have another party, but however you choose to acknowledge it don't ruin it for others by spreading your personal opinion.
To wrap this up, my point is that not everything needs much less requires an opinion from the peanut gallery.

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