December is here and Tis the Season to be Jolly! Why? Because It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year! As kids we are taught to be good all year, so that Santa will bring us our favorite toys. Parents work frantically to earn the money to buy special toys and when they can’t find them (or afford them), they get creative with reasons such as Santa started late and ran out of supplies. Or the some of the elves got sick and Santa couldn’t finish making all the toys by himself. Of course these reasons come with the promise that Santa might get these finished in a few months, so the disappointment won’t spoil the holiday.

Family and neighbors decorate their homes with colored lights, beautiful trees, and Christmas ornaments. Merchandisers flood the media with ads of items that will make wonderful presents to give to people we love and they make us believe that the price tag of the gifts equals our love for the recipient.

The traditional holiday season starts with the ever popular wish list! This includes planning for gatherings, cooking, cleaning, decorating, shopping, wrapping gifts, and being merry! Sounds like lots of fun! Thank goodness all this work and preparation only happens once a year!

But what if that once a year isn’t festive for everyone? Does that mean they can’t be happy? Of course not! To illustrate, we have created a somewhat generic wish list and an antidote list for those whose reality isn’t the perfect traditional Christmas.

Traditional Wish List

  • A joyous family reunion.
  • Being invited to a special party and dressing up in fancy clothes.
  • Getting engaged to that special someone.
  • Being surprised by getting the gift(s) you wanted.
  • Transforming your home into a winter wonderland…indoor and outdoor lights.

For whatever reason(s) this is not your reality, you can still make this the most wonderful time of the year if you want. It just requires a little tweaking of the list.

Antidote: Non-Traditional Wish List

  • Define your family and spend time with them. Your family might be you and your pet. Or you and your mate. It could just be you. If you can’t travel to see family members who are distant, maybe Skype or FaceTime are options.
  • Engage your friends and family by hosting a special party that is low or no-cost. Invite them to your home and ask them to bring a dish! You can make ornaments for trimming your tree, or just play old-fashioned board games like Monopoly, Scrabble, Clue, and Charades.
  • Make gifts to give. These can be material gifts or services such as one homemade dish or accompanying someone to a doctor’s visit.
  • Choose a different time of the year to celebrate. This can be a birthday or opt to celebrate gift-giving in another month. How about Christmas in July?

is no law that says that one must celebrate the holidays in traditional ways…or even at all! The point is that the season consumes people whether they choose it or not. Traditional celebrations can be wonderful and create lifelong memories. But that’s not the only way to be festive and create lasting memories!

People should do whatever they want during this time of the year…even if it’s just a continuation of what they’ve been doing all year!

All I Want for Christmas is…to live in the present and be happy with my reality.

All I Want for Christmas is…to be happy with whatever I decide to do.

All I Want for Christmas is…(you fill in the blank)

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