By Julie DeLong, A-1 Freeman Moving Group
Remember when you were a youngster and the greatest day ever was when the Sears Wish Book arrived in the mailbox? Okay, if you are too young to have that miraculous remembrance, the Wish Book was a Christmas catalog, with a stunning, brilliantly illuminated tree on the cover, and pages and pages of gadgets, and bikes, and dollhouses--and matching jammies for the entire family. That catalog cover was an inspiration for a flawless Christmas for countless children which are Amazon-savvy grown ups today, and be honest, you kind of miss the excitement of cracking open that Wish Book and finding that year's Barbie Dream House on the inside cover.
That's the thing concerning traditions--they eventually phase out, and something new takes the place of the old. Sometimes they reach a natural and organic ending--the coordinating PJs come to mind--but other times, a tradition ceases too suddenly, causing you to be trapped in an emotional vacuum. That is a common situation when you've moved to Little Rock and are contending with that first holiday season in a new location, without your "this is what we normally do" safety net to traverse the season. Oh, you did not actually like visiting your Great aunt Myrtle's for dried out turkey for Thanksgiving? And the old neighbors whose notion of decorating was a yard (and roof) full of inflatables?? Well, it is time to let it go and commence some new traditions--ones that you and your household would like to do.
This is a millennial idea which has caught on over generational divides (some millennials have youngsters in high school these days), being a group who's on the move and thus spending the holidays away from their home and family. Invite some new friends--neighbors, co-workers, kid's friends families--over for a Friendsgiving dinner. You supply the turkey, or tenderloin, or the chopsticks (you're bursting out--feel free to order in Chinese) and everyone brings a side dish or a dessert. Do not feel you have to invite countless, ask as few or as many as you wish.
There are numerous volunteer opportunities throughout the holidays, and you may go it alone, or as a family. Churches, YMCAs, and coffee boutiques can be a superb source of identifying opportunities, which range from helping out in a soup kitchen to providing holiday food items and gifts and wrapping gifts for youngsters.
Attend an Event
Astonishing as it might be to recognize, there's more to holiday entertainment than yet another amateur performance of the Nutcracker. There are holiday shows, tree lightings, performances, and religious events. Many little municipalities host light extravaganzas--figure out if there is one nearby. Some towns in the South set up out of doors ice-skating rinks over the holidays--sure, you can be dressed in shorts, nevertheless do bring mittens since it is a tad chilly out there on the ice.
We all grew up with the Grinch, and also those great Rankin-Bass movies--who can ever forget the Burgermeister Meisterburger? Have a weekly movie night over the holidays and revisit the old "Miracle on 34th Street" one week, and "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation" or possibly "Christmas With the Kranks" the next.
Consider taking A Vacation
Should you be just not feeling the holiday season this year, and you can manage it financially, take a getaway. It is not too late to reserve a vacation somewhere hot and tropical, but if that is not in the spending plan head someplace not far away. If you're able to conveniently travel there, New York reaches its best during the holidays--the big tree at Rockefeller Center goes up before Thanksgiving, and also the holiday shop windows around 5th and Madison Avenues are virtually worth the trip.
The internet makes it so simple to remain plugged in with old friends and family when you find yourself moving a long distance away--it's bittersweet, to be sure, but truly more sweet than bitter. You can share your celebrations in real time or scroll through photos more leisurely down the road. No matter what, stay upbeat--New Year's is only a week away after which it is all finished until next year.
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