A Simple Approach to Living With Less

In Search of the Christmas Spirit

Yesterday I spent about six hours baking all kinds of holiday goodies. From lemon bars to Rolo thumbprints to all kinds of cookies in between, we cooked and taste tested our hearts out.

Today the kids and I are watching a Christmas movie marathon.

The goal of all this: to encourage the Christmas spirit to finally knock me over the head.

I’m not sure what the problem is, but I just don’t feel it this year.

On the surface all the Christmasy elements are in place:

  • Christmas tree – check!
  • Nativity scene – check!
  • Christmas music piped through the speakers – check!
  • Nightly advent reading as a family – check!

So I just don’t know what’s going on and why I can’t get into the holiday groove.

What gets YOU in the holiday spirit? I’ll take any suggestions you have.

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Article originally published on 12/13/2011

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  1. For me nothing drains the holiday spirit more than run away consumerism or worse yet others bugging me for gift ideas because they have no idea what to get me when I honestly do not want that much.

  2. Maybe the christmas spirit is like happiness? The harder you are looking for it, the more elusive it gets?

    It seems to me (looking from across the ocean) that telling yourself that you have to feel a certain way at christmas is a sure way of not getting it. But christmas is a very different thing here in the Netherlands.

  3. This year I found the Christmas spirit through a couple of strings of lights around the inside of my patio door, the beauty of the advent season services at my church, the Christmas pageant in which my grandchildren participated, and the rallying of a neighborhood nearby in support of the right of one of their own to display lighted peacocks on their roof. (The peacocks are quite pretty, by the way.)

  4. To add to my previous post, I attended a Christmas party last weekend at which a friend was sporting a lovely baby bump. She went into labor later that night and has since delivered a beautiful baby boy. Could anything be more in the spirit of Christmas?

  5. For me, it comes from making extra efforts to help others, doing new or seasonal things with my kids to expand their view of the season, recognizing others who make special efforts to help others and bring cheer to their day.

  6. It didn’t hit me until a friend and I visited a lady in a rehabilitation center who is recovering from hip surgery and we brought he a tiny Christmas tree, which just made her day! We visited with her for several minutes until she was tired and needed a nap. Next step: bake some holiday goodness just for her!

  7. Couple things I like to do. Once all those Christmas goodies are done we make plates to delivery to the neighbors as a family. Also forcing myself to relax. The best is at night when it’s quiet, the room is dark, curled up on the couch, and I just stare at the lit Christmas tree. I think of the real meaning of Christmas, all my blessings, and fun memories of Christmas when I was little.
    Good luck, I think the middle of December is sometimes the hardest time to drum up Christmas feelings. I think it happens to me every year.

  8. I haven’t found the “expected” Christmas spirit this year either. And I’m fine with that, although others may see it as odd. I’ve stopped being a part of what John (previous comment) calls run away consumerism, both in giving and receiving. I’m simply concentrating this year on helping others, people who are truly in need, and that has taken me to an entirely different level of Christmas joy and peace.

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