By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
Remember when you were a kid and the best day ever was when the Sears Wish Book arrived in the mailbox? Okay, if you are too young to have that miraculous memory, the Wish Book was a Christmas catalog, sporting a stunning, perfectly illuminated tree on the cover, and many more pages of toys, and bicycles, and dollhouses--and coordinating jammies for the family. That catalog cover was an inspiration for a exceptional Christmas for scores of kids who're Amazon-savvy grownups today, and be honest, you sort of miss the thrill of opening that Wish Book and seeing that year's Barbie Dream House on the inside cover.
That is the thing concerning traditions--they at some point phase out, and something new takes the place of the old. At times they reach a natural and organic conclusion--the coordinating PJs come to mind--but in other cases, a tradition ceases too unexpectedly, causing you to be trapped in an emotional void. This is a common situation when you have moved to El Paso and are encountering that initial holiday season in a new area, without your "this is what we normally do" safety net to navigate the season. Oh, you did not actually like going to your Aunt Myrtle's for dried out turkey for Thanksgiving? And those old neighbors whose concept of decorating was a lawn (and roof) brimming with inflatables?? Well, it's time to let it go and start new traditions--ones that you and your loved ones would like to do.
It's a millennial event which has caught on over generational divides (a number of millennials have kids in high school currently), being a group that is on the move and so spending the holidays away from home and family. Invite a few new friends--neighbors, co-workers, kid's friends families--over for a Friendsgiving dinner. You provide the turkey, or tenderloin, or the chopsticks (you are bursting out--feel free to order in Chinese) and everybody makes a side or a dessert. Do not believe you have to invite countless, ask as few or as many as you like.
There are numerous volunteer opportunities over the holidays, and you may go it alone, or as a family unit. Churches, YMCAs, and coffee boutiques are a great source of locating possibilities, covering anything from helping out in a soup kitchen to supplying holiday meals and presents and wrapping gifts for little ones.
Attend an Event
Astonishing as it can be to grasp, there's far more to holiday activities than an additional amateur performance of the Nutcracker. You will discover holiday shows, tree lightings, plays, as well as faith based gatherings. A number of smaller towns host light extravaganzas--determine if there is one close to you. Some cities in the South set up outdoor ice-skating rinks during the holidays--sure, you may dress in shorts, however do bring gloves because it is a tad nippy out there on the ice.
Most of us grew up with the Grinch, and those great Rankin-Bass movies--who could ever forget the Burgermeister Meisterburger? Have a regular movie date during the holidays and take another look at the old "Miracle on 34th Street" one week, and "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" or possibly "Christmas With the Kranks" the next.
Plan A Vacation
If you are simply not feeling the holiday season this year, and you can coordinate it financially, consider a getaway. It is not too late to reserve an excursion someplace warmer and tropical, however if that is not in the budget head someplace near by. If you can conveniently travel there, New York is at its finest throughout the holidays--the large tree at Rockefeller Center goes up before Thanksgiving, and the holiday shop windows down Fifth and Madison Avenues are practically worth the trip.
The online world makes it so simple to stay plugged in with old close friends and family when you are moving a long distance away--it's bittersweet, for sure, yet ultimately more sweet than bitter. You can share your activities instantly or even browse through photographs more leisurely in the future. No matter what, stay upbeat--New Year's is just a week away after which it's all over until next year.
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