You Don't Have To
From reading chef memoirs, I learned about the kitchen term for "way too far behind to ever catch up:" in the weeds, or, sometimes, ankles in the weeds, or weeded. It's December 15, and I can feel the "weeded" all over the land. Your list is too long. Your intentions to be finished with all shopping and gift giving by October 1? Down the drain. You have shifted now to holding on, head down, until it's over.
Wait! Here comes Holly-anna, the Spirit of Relief from Tiny Consumer Miseries, bearing three gifts.
- You don't have to buy any more gifts.
- You don't have to go to any more parties.
- You don't have to spend three more weeks in love/hate with food and drink.
There! Fresh start. Clean slate. Choice is restored. Breathe, nap, drink a glass of water.
You'd rather take smaller steps? Some possibilities:
- Make one donation to a wonderful cause. Let family and friends know you've chosen this approach—or not.
- Write a dedicated love letter to each important person on your list. Say specifically what you love and appreciate about her or him. Best gift ever.
- Make chocolate bark, homemade mustard or spiced pecans as food gifts. More ambitious? Make homemade marshmallows. Small clean jars with lids make fine containers for these gifts.
- You "must" give gifts to children? Go straight to that old grandparents' approach: a bit of money in an envelope. It's still popular with young ones.
- Can't cancel all the parties? Remove the two least important. If you were ill, you wouldn't go. You may be on the edge of illness from exposure to extreme consumerism. Stay home and rest.
- Eat good food before going out to parties. It changes everything about the siren call of those grocery store cheese balls.
Holly-anna wants you to finish this year and start the next one with vim, vigor, optimism, a full heart, and happiness. No weeds. No need.