Christmas in the Heart

I love Christmas movies, and one of the lines in particular movie really struck a chord with me:

“If Christmas is in the heart, then Christmas is in the air.”

It’s so easy to get lost in the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. There are gifts to purchase, cookies to bake, cards to mail, family to visit, and many other things that involve the holidays. And it can be a wonderful thing, or a stressful thing, depending upon whether or not Christmas is in your heart. When you think of the holidays, do you become overwhelmed with the list of things to do, or do you become overwhelmed with excitement for Christmas and what it means?

Here is a quick list of practicals to help keep Christmas in your heart:

1) Start Early – If you’re just now starting, don’t fret. Just start now! Plan one thing to conquer each day. Don’t overwhelm yourself by looking at the whole list of things to do, pick one and focus on that. Home from work early tonight? Maybe you could put up that garland you meant to do yesterday.

2) Plan Ahead – I keep a list of all the people that I buy for each year, and as ideas pop into my head or they mention something in conversation, I write it down. By the time I’m ready to hit the sales, I already know what I’m going to buy, that way it takes away the stress of trying to think of a gift at the last minute.

3) Freeze! – I use my freezer so much I should change my name to Princess Elsa. I freeze everything! Mashed potatoes for Christmas dinner? I make a huge batch and freeze it! Cookie dough? I made a ton of it on a quiet weekend and it’s sitting in my freezer ready to be cut into cute little Christmas shapes! If you can make it, you can freeze it! And it will relieve the stress of having to make everything “right now!”

4) Bought it? Wrap It. – Bought a gift? Awesome. Wrap it as soon as you get home. I become very grouchy when I have to spend an entire night wrapping gifts when I know there are other things that need to get done.

5) Remember what you’re celebrating – You know that saying, “keep Christ in Christmas?” Remember what it is that we are actually celebrating. Sure, the gifts, the goodies and the decorations are magical…but nothing surpasses the true magic of the reason behind the season.

Keep Christmas in your heart, so that everyone around you can feel Christmas in the air!