I learned a few things this Christmas, and relearned a few from previous Christmases Past.
Hopefully, they won't come back to haunt me.
1) Stressing details is ridiculous. The energy I put into cleaning spots that wouldn't be visited was wasted energy. The spots didn't get visited. Two kinds of soup crackers, three kinds of breads, multiple choices, matching tags and paper are details that no one is going to notice, and if they do, they can own that issue. I don't have to. Even though my freakishness makes sense to me at the time. It really doesn't make sense at all.
2) Quality vs quantity is a decent goal. I have this fear of people starving on my watch. If two soups is adequate, then three is better and four is what I need to do. And each soup needs to have it's own toppings. I'll need to provide lots of things to nibble in case people aren't rolling around, clutching their bellies and begging, "No MORE!" I'm guessing that the time together really is the important thing.
Decorating, too. I seriously put up two Christmas decorations this year. One was a gift, the second was a post-Christmas bargain that had gotten tucked away where I could put my hands on it. The stuff doesn't really add to Christmas. I have too much Christmas stuff. And if I paint a beautiful cozy looking nest, but am a stressed freak who snaps at her loved ones, that nest isn't exactly comfort and joy, merry or peace.
3) Kindness and patience make the whole Christmas season peaceful. From Black Friday to "Rush-to-return-em" 26th, patience will save some from stroking out while waiting in line, or flipping out on the Salvation Army bell-ringer. And if we'd all keep in mind that if we've got a wedge of stinky-crazy on our plate, others will have one, too. My stinky-crazy holiday need list really doesn't take priority because....it's not about me, or mine.
If I had gone ballistic on my husband, because I needed to use the stove on the 23rd, I wouldn't have the beautiful kitchen floor with the little island nest. That floor is a HUGE deal. And it's beautiful. And because I didn't flip out, he's patiently adding things daily. Yesterday I got a door on my pantry. (aka the Troll Cave)
4) If I start eating junk I will eat the junk til it's gone. My Vegan Thanksgiving was pure. Christmas started off that way. I had great intentions and was a good Vegan til about the 22nd. Then I began nibbling on treats that came to the office. Oh my, there were some treats. Boxes of candy, nuts, chips, popcorn, fruit baskets, baked goods. Though I pulled off vegetarian, I sucked in a lot of hidden dairy. The baked goods, the creamy ooey gooey treats, not like I poured milk or cheese directly upon them, but they all contained dairy. I succumbed big time. And paid for it. Am paying for it. I am lethargic and bloated and feeling a lot drawn to processed food.
Enough for now. There are probably eleven more points, now sure to be the ghosts of Christmases Future, but like I said, I've got a coating of dairy on the brain and I'm sluggish.