Sunday, November 28, 2010

I have a feeling that thinking about decorating isn't really how I should observe the first Sunday of Advent

I'm trying to decide when we should put up our Christmas decorations. I know that a lot of people put them up this weekend, and some even put them up before Thanksgiving-- the horror!

We've tried over the past few years to observe Advent better, and not to let ourselves automatically get swept into Christmas. In 2008, we waited particularly late to obtain and put up our tree, refraining until the fourth Sunday of Advent. As a result, we almost couldn't find a tree at all! It was stressful and frustrating.

Last year, my mother was visiting earlier in December, and we put up the tree while she was here so that we had an extra set of hands with Nate during the decorating!

It's hard to strike the right balance. I'd always been a fairly early decorator. And although I fully understand the reason for postponing the Christmas merriment, it's very difficult to do. I love, love, love listening to Christmas music on the radio, for example, of both the sacred and secular variety. The radio stations, though, drop the Christmas music as early as the day after Christmas. If I don't listen early, I feel like I miss out on part of the seasonal fun; listening to my own few Christmas CDs in the car just isn't the same.

Even though I love keeping my own house decorated at least through Epiphany, if not through the Baptism of the Lord, the decorations are long gone almost everywhere else--save for church, of course.

And, of course, there's something in me that feels a bit Grinch-like in protesting early celebration too much.

So I'm trying to figure this out. The fourth Sunday of Advent was definitely too late for the tree purchasing, but perhaps the third Sunday would work. I'm thinking perhaps we could put up some of the non-tree decorations next Sunday, put up the rest of the non-tree decorations and buy the tree on the weekend of the third Sunday, and decorate the tree on the fourth Sunday.

Anyway, the internet is no longer working for some reason, so I’ve copied and pasted this into a Word document to finish it. I might not be able to post tonight, but at least it’ll be all ready to go as soon as we’re back online.


claire said...

I relate to so much of your post, especially the part about the Christmas music on the radio. It drives me crazy that around here it starts November 1 and ends 12/25 at midnight (except for one station that keeps it going through New Year's). And I don't like to support that, yet I feel that I need to take advantage of it while it's on the radio, because like you playing my Christmas CDs in the car when the radio stations stop the Christmas music just isn't the same. As far as getting our tree, basically we get it when our schedule allows. Ideally I'd rather wait till later in the season, but it usually ends up being the first or second week in December because we have to do it when we can. Then we have a dilemma at the end of the season: my son's birthday is 1/8. I used to like to leave everything up till Baptism of the Lord, but now I take the decorations down right after new year's so we can decorate for my son's birthday. This year I offered to have his party out of the house (at a local indoor playground), but his heart is set on having a diningroom dinner with a fire in the fire place. So, January 2nd it's all coming down.

Lindsay said...

I have much the same problem you do. :o( I get mildly curmudgeonly when, the day after Christmas, everyone acts like it's over. When you mention that it's still going, they look at you like you're a crazy idiot. Blargh.