It’s Friday morning and I need to get to work. I get in the car, hit the ignition button and I’m brought to a halt by the sound filling my car …. Christmas music.
My first reaction is ‘Nope, I’m not ready for this.” I turn it off. It’s only November 1, Halloween was just last night. Candy litters my counter-top, the Jack-o-lanterns haven’t rotted yet, Thanksgiving is still four weeks away.
Retailers and the marketing industry dug into the holiday season well before Halloween. It’s the new way of being, prior to experiencing a holiday, we’re already being reminded of the next one that comes behind it.
However, as the November continues, this year feels different. While I said, ‘No way,” on November 1, my mindset is changing this year. And I wonder if I’m not alone.
One morning earlier this month, another mom in my neighborhood pulled up in her SUV. I walked up and we stood there talking. Then she says “Sorry, I know it’s early.”
I didn’t realize at first what she was apologizing for … but it was the Christmas music playing on the radio in her car. I laughed because it was so low, I didn’t even hear it. Yes, on that early November morning it felt too soon, but not so much anymore.
I’m easing into the holiday spirit earlier this year.
Commuting up and down I-96, I find myself tuning in the all-Christmas all the time radio stations. Give me the Charlie Brown Christmas song “Linus and Lucy” or “Carol of the Bells,” or “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We Three Kings” by the Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan and I’m in. That last one is a very underrated and underplayed song. Look it up and listen, it’s fantastic.
I’m not quite ready for “Santa Claus is Coming to Town” and definitely not “I saw Mommy Kissing Santa.” It’s too soon for that, but it’s not too early to focus on the joy of the holidays ahead.
Halloween is a big deal in our house, it’s my husband and son’s favorite holiday. Two days after it was over, Liam lamented that everyone in the neighborhood took their decorations down already.
“It’s sad that Halloween can only be one night,” he said.
Experts say decorating for the holidays early can make you happier. I believe it. The pretty garlands, lights and ornaments you’ve carefully packed away a year ago, dazzle the eyes and stir up fond memories when you pull them out and put them up this time of year.
We collect an ornament from every place we vacation, and when we pick those up, we remember those trips and those memories. Then there are those precious homemade decorations my son has given us since he was a toddler. He is nine now, and has less interest in making those crafts, so I know this year, I will take a little extra time to appreciate them.
While years past I have said bah humbug to early Christmas music and early holiday decorations, this time around, I’m embracing it. We could all use a little extra cheer as we transition to the cold and snow of Michigan winters, miss seeing the sun as often and plow our way through hectic schedules.