Saturday I had quickly eluded to the fact that this was a really nice Christmas. But, seriously there were a LOT of things that made it amazing and, well, eye opening.
I have read quite a few blogs that addressed how simplifying Christmas made a huge difference to them. While I would read these posts, I don't think the words ever sunk in..until I lived it myself. Now I understand.
The Guppies did NOT get as many gifts as in years passed. However, they did get the things that they truly wanted. (In fact many people would most likely think they got MORE than needed but I guess that's all relative.) They were very appreciative and extremely happy with what they received. Cleaning up the wrapping paper aftermath was a cinch too. In the end, I learned filler presents were just that...filler.
Papa and I exchanged a few gifts as well. My favorite of all being the heart bead for my Pandora bracelet with the words "I love you more".
Dinner was more simple than usual but with all optimal/quality ingredients. This translated into less stress for me in preparation, cost, and clean up. And, I was able to enjoy dinner with everyone else!
I kept my crazy cookie baking the same because I happen to really love to do it! Haha!
As for our time with Papa's family in the middle of the day...well....The Guppies have never liked going for myriad reasons. This year, it became too much for even Papa. Without going through the entire mess, the final straw was seeing that our twelve year old nephew (who lives at my mother in law's with his parents and is extremely immature with anger issues) was given a real rifle with bullets. (In case anyone wonders, the excuse that was given to us for the gift was that he needed it for the "survival skills" section of boy scouts.) The Guppies have finally gotten their wish because next year we will not be making the 45 minute trip each way on Christmas.
Next year, when our financial situation is on a more even keel again, we will keep with the more simple Christmas I think. It was so much more enjoyable without all the chaos of random things piled around us and a million dishes bubbling over on the stove.
Simple can be better.
I have finally learned the lesson myself.