I’m not going to lie to you Thirsty Nation, I’ve had some eggnog this evening. I drank a lot of nog, finally put up the outside decorations, and watched Christmas Vacation, the only Christmas movie that really matters other than Die Hard. I’m feeling a bit sappy, a bit like Clark Griswold trapped in his attic watching old home movies. I’m also feeling strangely appreciative.
I know what you are thinking. Appreciation is supposed to be Thanksgiving’s deal. We move on from that as soon as the table is cleared and the Black Friday sales start. This post is several weeks late.
Its a valid point, but hear me out. Somehow Thanksgiving has managed to stay about appreciation, as well as football and family of course. Any holiday that isn’t primarily about food and spending time with family really serves no purpose other than potentially a day off from work.
It’s managed to keep it’s core intact, but can we really say the same about Christmas? Yes, for some it’s an important religious occasion, and there is still the food and family that make it special. Having small children adds a magical aspect to the season that even a self-professed grinch like myself can’t help but get caught up in.
But mainly it’s still kind of about presents, isn’t it? We can dress it up and talk about the “spirit of giving” and that’s certainly legitimate, something that I wish more people would feel year round, but how much stress did all this giving cause you this year, every other year?
If this sounds like an anti-Christmas rant, it isn’t. I loved how excited my daughter got when the lights went on, can’t wait for her to open the ridiculous amount of stuff that I’ve bought. The fact that the lights on the side deck came on after having never being removed last year is all the proof that I need in miracles.
No, my point here today is to make a suggestion, a gift that everyone will appreciate. It’s not one of those lists that seem to be so popular this time of year, no links to Amazon ( although you can certainly feel free to do any last minute shopping through the ads on this site), just something that I think we could all receive a bit more often.
Last night as we were changing her shoes before dance class another little girl came over and handed my daughter one of her pretzel rods, prompting an immediate response of “thank you.” It was a pretty proud moment. Proud not because it’s unusual for her to say this, but because it’s so unusual for the rest of us, those that no longer have people reminding them to mind their manners constantly. For that moment I felt like maybe I was doing a decent job at raising her to be better.
As I put her to bed tonight, I thanked my daughter for being a good girl today. I messaged a friend and thanked them for listening to me vent last last. I thanked my mother in law for offering to pick up the teenager from work tomorrow so that I wouldn’t miss any of my team’s football game. Much to his surprise and amusement I thanked the cashier at the liquor store for always being so pleasant.
Buy your presents, your cards, your fruit platters. As you pass them out, thank the person that you are giving them to. Tell them that you appreciate them. It just might be turn out to be their favorite gift this year.