Get the Grime Before Santa Comes Along

Ahh, the holiday season.  A time to gather with family, to give from our hearts, to feast on savory meals, to sing holiday songs and to be mesmerized by twinkling lights.  What great joy the holiday season brings, right? For many of us, the joy of holiday season is silenced by the stress.  

A study by the US Highbush Blueberry Council revealed  31% of Americans describe the holiday season as frantic.  Did the survey population consist of children, teens and young adults?  As a Mom, with adult friends, I feel it’s more accurate to say only 31% of Americans would not describe the holiday season as frantic. 

Gift selection is mentally exhausting in itself.   Although we can do most of our shopping online (Praise His name for Amazon Prime), we find ourselves forced to endure lines and crowds for savings or items only found in stores.  While tackling our gift list, we’re coordinating meal menus, delegating dishes and anticipating the hours we’ll spend on our feet preparing said meals. According to the study, 74% of us will be eating our stress away and 60% of will be guilt ridden over it. Personally, the guilt really sets in when I realize I now have to add the tormenting task of shopping for a cocktail dress to wear to my DH’s work party.  Oh yes, then there’s the work party, school assemblies, classroom parties and church events. If you feel you haven’t reached your maximum holiday stress level, I suggest volunteering to organize your children’s school parties. For bonus stress, snatch up the duty of collecting money from 30 parents to purchase that perfect teacher gift.

When it comes to holiday stress, I consider myself an overachiever.  Unapologetically, I identify with the 49% of Americans who work too hard to get that perfect holiday.  In spite of all the chaos, the holiday season never ceases to warm my heart. My hope is to share that warmth with those I love.  That’s why we host Christmas with our extended family in our home. This is the one time each year I need a clean canvas to create an enchanting display while living among all males.  After a deep cleaning, I get to unbox all the Christmas magic from the attic. Over the weekend, my home turns into a winter wonderland in the midst of Christmas.

I’m fortunate to have a DH that is as passionate about our exterior display as I am the interior.  In addition to the fascinating yard lights, he lugs a ladder around our house, shimmies up it and hangs lights from our roof. Hats off to you, sir!  It would be insulting to his heroic act if those twinkling lights illuminated mold, dirt or grime chilling on the gutters or siding. That’s why fall is a perfect time to schedule a pressure washing service.  A nice, clean palette is essential, and no one wants to be liable for Santa slipping off a moldy roof.