OK, we won’t sugar coat it: the holidays might be hard this year. Maybe you’re used to having a huge bash with family and are feeling the need to change your plans, maybe you’re facing some, ahem, opposition from older family members who don’t support you altering beloved holiday traditions or maybe you just have no freaking clue what’s best to do this year (* raises hand *). But either way, we can all admit that the holidays this year just feel…different.
And while different can be challenging, I’m also here to say that different doesn’t always have to be a bad thing. In fact, while I’m still firmly on team I-have-no-clue-what-our-holidays-will-actually-look-like this year, I’m still embracing what I see as the beauty of this weird season. Ready to get in the holiday spirit with me? Here are 10 things we can all thank our Christmas stars for this year.
No Elf on the Shelf Competitions
The way I see it is this: if your kids are in virtual school this year, that’s less opportunity they have to compare and contrast notes about whose Elf is doing what. Which means less pressure for you as a parent to keep up with all that craziness, am I right or am I right?
A Break from the Holiday School Events
On one hand, I could get really, really sad about the thought of missing out on kids’ holiday events and concerts and parties. But on the other hand, those gyms and classrooms got awfully overheated and stuffy and mysteriously sticky (??) real fast. Maybe missing one year won’t be completely terrible…
You Can Use Your Baby as an Excuse for Anything You Don’t Want to Do
A wise woman once told me that when it comes to holidays, having a baby is a built-in excuse to get out of anything you don’t want to do. And you know what? She’s absolutely right. I have the benefit of having a lot of children so most of the time, I don’t even have to lie because it’s inevitable someone will have the sniffles in my house, but if there’s something you’re not comfortable doing this holiday season, your baby provides the perfect out.
No Holiday Work Parties
Unless office parties were your jam, in which case, my sincere apologies. Maybe I can offer you some spiked punch as a consolation?
Your Budget Will Thank You
Less parties and get-togethers will definitely be easier on your wallet this year. From skipping white elephant gifts to not feeling pressured to buy new holiday attire, maybe you can save a few bucks and start saving towards that post-pandemic vacation someday. Sounds amazing, right?
No Sitting on Santa’s Lap
Word on the parenting street is that taking your kids–especially the baby and toddler age bunch–to see Santa this year is actually way better than in the past. The reason? There’s no more sitting on Santa’s lap! Precautions mean that safety steps are in place, like Plexiglass or social distancing, so kids can be near Santa, but don’t have to actually sit on his lap. Which means that this year, you might actually get a smiling picture of your kid with Santa instead of one of them screaming and trying to run away while you feel slightly guilty for pushing a somewhat creepy tradition of having your kid sit on a strange old man’s lap. Win-win!
Make-Your-Own Snow Days
As the wife of an educator, I happen to know that most school districts this year are not counting any absences against kids. They’re just getting through, like the rest of us are. Which means that if you happen to feel like you need to declare your own snow day, then you should do it. I called my own snow day myself this week and it was awesome. We watched all the classic cheesy Christmas movies, went sledding, and made hot cocoa and it was just the break we all needed. 10/10 recommend.
Black Santa Jammies
Santa in different skin tones? That’s definitely a Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night, indeed. These Old Navy unisex holiday print pajamas featuring Santa in three different skin tones are all you want for Christmas.
Takeout is Heroic
And last but not least, what may just be the best part of all to embrace this holiday season: the beauty of take-out. In many places across the country, in-person dining has been shuttered under new precautions which means one thing: the act of ordering takeout has been transformed from sheer laziness on your part to an act of heroines to support the restaurants and the staff that work there. Just don’t forget the tip, of course.
Happy holidays to all the true heroes among us!