As the evenings in Michigan begin to cool, I find myself thinking about the holidays. In our family we have 6 celebrations from October through New Year's. Birthdays, family gatherings, parties, and of course Christmas. Last week while trying to do some shopping for my kids I was shocked by how little was on the shelves. Talking with other manufacturers I keep realizing that the problem isn't just one thing. There are shortages of base supplies, less trucks available for moving goods, back ups at the harbors and a greater demand for some items.
This year more than any other I feel the need to have a wonderful holiday. 2020 has been a beat down and I want to feel a little magic this holiday. True confession: I am NOT a minimalist when it comes to the holidays. I am the exact opposite. I like to overdo everything. Too much food, too many gifts, too many parties, etc, etc. and I want to carry my crazy into this year.
So with the current shortages, all I keep thinking is, "I need a plan".
Here is my plan to make a magical holiday season in the worse year EVER
I am buying gifts and supplies now! Whenever I get an idea for a gift, I go and buy it then or put it on a list for shopping on the weekend. There might even be a bag of flour and some baking supplies in my freezer. I cannot handle a baking supply shortage during cookie season
Plan to scale back
Like I said, I am not a minimalist but I do recognize that this year is about loss and giving. I plan to scale back on actual gifts but increase my spending on charitable giving. I also want to shift my focus toward enjoying the moments rather than the things associated with each holiday.
Spend dollars where my heart goes
This year I am focusing on shopping small whenever possible. I want to live in a community with small shops, wonderful restaurants and vibrant activities. The best way I can make sure that is how my community will look in the future is to spend my money with them now.
Facetime, Zoom and other tech programs are going to be essential when connecting with my out of state and older family members. I have recently been installing better webcams and speakers for each device so we can stay connected easily.
This is the hardest for me. I have a set image in my mind of the perfect Halloween or Thanksgiving and it definitely doesn't involve medical face masks and social distancing. But I also want everyone to be safe and healthy, so it's time to let some things be different this year. Maybe the bowl of candy stays on the porch and I wave from the window and the kids parade by. Or maybe I just drop a bag of goodies at each neighbors house instead. Change can be hard but recognizing it's necessity should ease some of the anxiety
This year will be different but it can still be wonderful in its own right. My dream is that we end the year with a vaccine, a new vision and a new respect for the things that make life so special.