Christmas is not a Day

Before I begin, let me just say that I am writing this post in a very distracted manner. I found some of my parent’s old Christmas records (you know, those large black disk things) and I am listening to them.

I am a huge fan of the old school stuff, so, I will try and write this post.

Tomorrow is Christmas Eve. And some might think by Saturday, Christmas will be over. That could not be more wrong.

But, before I go into how wrong that is, let’s talk Christmas magic and traditions. There are so many traditions that people do at Christmas, all over the world. Like caroling, yule logs, recipes, leaving cookies and milk out for Santa. For my family it is mincemeat pie, watching Trans-Siberian Orchestra music video while we decorate our tree and peppermint tea with shortbreads.

But, the underlying Christmas tradition to many is the magical feeling that the holiday gives.

Holidays and special events give us different feelings. Christmas gives us the strongest feelings; excitement, wonder, joy, kindness, and happiness.

A couple of weeks ago while I was wrapping presents, a song came up on Amazon music, and it caught my attention.

It got my mind spinning; my writer’s brain began to go into all sorts of different directions.

The lyrics start out

In December
We give our gifts
Wishing well to our world
Peace on earth to everyone
A time to be joyful
When all is calm and all is bright

Beginning in November, people start to get giddy; excited, the anticipation is starting to build! Christmas is coming!

Then December comes and brings with it the joys and kindnesses only found at Christmas. But then comes January.

But why
Does it change with seasons?
And why can’t we just hold on?

Many people become depressed when Christmas is over, for weeks it’s all hype about shopping, decorations, Christmas songs, and suddenly it’s all over in a matter of a day.

Kris Kringle in the 1940s Miracle on 34th Street said it best when he said “Christmas isn’t just a day, it’s a frame of mind” this couldn’t be truer. At Christmas time we get excited for the season of Jesus’ birth, telling others about how Jesus came as a baby to save the world, there is an undeniable joy you feel around Christmas time.

Why can’t we feel that way all year long? Why does Christmas only last 25 days? Granted there is nothing that can come close to the actual Christmas Day, but we don’t have to limit our feelings and joy to just one month.

There are times
I can remember with family and friends
The light of Christmas
Lights up my memories
The magic of love
We made time

We made time. During the month, we mark off days to do things. We make time to make sure that we have an opportunity to make a new memory or two during the month. From driving around town to look at the Christmas lights, baking day, going to light shows, having friends over for cookies, whatever it is, we make time for it.

How often do we make time during the rest of the year to make memories? From January to April we feel like these are kind of dull months. Especially in Wisconsin, we don’t get spring until May, so all we have is snow and slush for those months. And it’s very easy to get the winter blues.

This is why it is so important to carry the feelings of Christmas joys over into the next year and continue to make time.

Life gets busy, I know. Come January into February, we get back into our daily routine without the Christmas music blaring in the background, the tree sparkling with presents, the lights all around the house, and we lose that Christmas magic.

But we don’t have to lose all of it. Think of the emotions I have talked about…excitement, wonder, joy, kindness, and happiness…we get those feelings when we do things for others, share what we have, and shine Christ’s light to a world that needs it.

None of that should be limited to one month. So, starting in January, start the new year to make memories every month and keep the Christmassy vibe all the year.

If you will permit me to quote one more Christmas movie/book. The great Charles Dickson wrote a book that has been celebrated every Christmas; The Christmas Carol.

At the end of the story, after Scrooge finally understands Christmas and faces his past, present, and future. He says…

I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year. I will live in the Past, the Present, and the Future. The Spirits of all Three shall strive within me. I will not shut out the lessons that they teach!

Scrooge resolved that he would keep Christmas in his heart, and try and keep it all the year.

We can do the same. By making new memories every month, share what we have, and shine Christ’s light to a world that needs it.