The holiday is over but lingering good will is floating around. At least for a while. Christmas isn’t my favorite holiday. It was when I was a kid. Two weeks off from school and presents. Throw in a snowstorm and it’s all good. My Mom baked and cooked her heart out. People visiting. What’s not to love?
These days I don’t hope for snow because it makes travel harder (although maybe a few flakes would be OK). I like the upbeat spirit that accompanies the holiday. You can find it even if it isn’t the same as when I was a kid. (That’s just my set of filters.)
Locally only one Starbucks is open and it’s not my home one. They canvass all the stores for volunteers to work Christmas Day. The pay is good so I don’t feel badly that they work. I tip well to enjoy my mocha latte. I bought two. The second one was an insurance policy in case I got that longing!
Several of my local baristas were working. It was like old home week. (There is something to be said about people knowing your name!) It wasn’t overly crowded and people were nice (remember these are pre-coffee people so nice is very good).
Then there is the gifting. We don’t do much. Most are checks. One of the adult offspring announced that he’s not doing gifts for anyone but kids. Works for us! There is no logic to giving a check and receiving something similar in return. All of the beloved husband’s family lives cross-country so it’s hard to know what people are into or what they have. Asking for ideas defeats the purpose of a gift. My family hasn’t exchanged adult gifts in decades. Many decades.
The last place I worked was a “gift giving” place. Most companies discourage “gifting up” but this one encouraged it. I remember chipping in $20 for an executive gift only to get a $5 bottle of wine in return. Hmmm….
The local department store closed in early spring. I was surprised by how much I miss it. A lot of the holiday mayhem is gone. The remaining stores in the mall didn’t bother opening early. Who thought I’d miss shopping crowds but they create a part of the holiday buzz.
We did our traditional ride on Christmas Eve to look at lights. Many homes in the local neighborhoods go all out. They could be on a TV show fighting for first place! At the end, the beloved husband thought generally that people were cutting back. I thought so too but it was still festive.
There is a certain kind of person who goes crazy for Christmas. Some celebrate it in July (yikes!). I didn’t get that gene. I follow some traditions and special foods but nothing crazy. I enjoy how cheery people are, greeting strangers with a smile but I would prefer if that same cheeriness was here year round.