The holiday season is my favorite time of year. I love the weather, the festivities, the evergreen trees, the decorations, the beautiful storefront windows, candy canes, the lights that seem to cover almost everything, all of the presents (big and small), and the Christmas spirit that seems to be contagious.
There is nothing better than decorating your home with as much or as little decorations as you want, spending the holidays with the family or just kicking back with a mug of hot chocolate and your favorite Christmas songs playing on the iPod. Even better are the holiday parties (with people you actually like or care about) or watching a Christmas play---think the Christmas Spectacular at Radio City Music Hall or the Nutcracker or any other holiday play you can get tickets to.
Some of my favorite holiday memories are the simple things. Decorating my house for the holidays and being with family on Christmas and watching back-to-back basketball games, a spread of the best soul food in the kitchen, and a little dancing to good music. I especially love the Christmas gospel concerts at my church. He is the reason for the season and I especially feel this whenever I am in church.
I have learned to love this season for what it is and to appreciate the little things. I don't look for the perfect holiday, the perfect gifts or decorations or even the perfect holiday parties. Sadly, I can remember a time when I didn't. And this was because I wanted the perfect Christmas holiday. You know the one that you see on television on your favorite show or on the most popular commercials for the season...The photo spreads in magazines of staged holiday parties where all the men dressed in suits with bow ties and women dressed in velvet...The gargantuan evergreen tree perfectly decorated just a few feet away from the custom-made stockings on the mantle of the enormous stone fireplace...The luxury car parked in the driveway with the red bow on top and the pile of presents under the Christmas tree that cover the range of our wants and desires.
And yes, there is a place for all of this. We all want the perfect Christmas holiday---and it's amazing if you get it---but it isn't necessary to be in the holiday spirit. Once I learned that, I grew to love the holiday season the way I used to as a kid. It's now my favorite time of year and I won't let anything take the Christmas spirit from me again. I hope you enjoy this season and make it something special to you and those you love.