Thursday, January 8, 2015

Enjoying Life is Not Negotiable

Do you ever think to yourself that maybe you got in a little over your head? I have a really bad habit of doing just that. Because of my ambitions to make homemade gifts, entertain various groups of people, attend several holiday events, and keep try to find a clean house, I found myself a bit run down the week before Christmas.

The weekend before Christmas I was madly trying to finish sewing a handful of projects I had started with the intent of giving several homemade gifts this year. I was also trying to finish neighbor gifts, clean the house before company arrived, and plan all sorts of activities related to Christmas. I ended up with a to do list that was more than two pages long. Seriously. We're talking 8 1/2 x 11 binder ruled. Oh, and I had made two columns per page. Can you say overload?

Needless to say, I was stressed. Graham was stressed. Neither one of us was in the Christmas spirit. As we sat on the couch one evening, overwhelmed and tired, I was reminded of a conversation we had a few days before we got married.

At that time, we had been up to our eyeballs in wedding preparations, and I was trying to figure out how to juggle everything that needed to happen the day before the wedding. Graham was telling me that he would like to schedule some time in the day for us to be together, just the two of us, and I was expressing concern that I didn't know if that was feasible with everything else that was going on. Then he said something that made me reconsider my priorities: "Megan, spending a little bit of quality time with my fiancee the day before we get married is not negotiable to me."

He was right. I had gotten so wrapped up in all the other details of the wedding that I had forgotten what was most important.

This all came back to me on that night a few weeks ago, and I turned to Graham, and said, "Enjoying Christmas is not negotiable. What do we need to change so that we can focus on enjoying family traditions and celebrating the birth of the Savior?"

Mostly, my answer was to change my attitude. I still had a lot to do (you can't host 25 people for Christmas dinner without having some necessary tasks to accomplish), but I stopped trying to be the "Pinterest Perfect" hostess. I could still make sure everyone had clean sheets and food to eat without worrying about having a welcome basket on every bed, hanging all the artwork that had been sitting around for months, and creating a list of fun activities for family members coming into town. I realized our house would be much more comfortable for our guests if I focused on having fun than if I stressed over making place cards and a DIY centerpiece for Christmas dinner.

Graham and I decided that we WOULD enjoy Christmas. And, you know what? We did. It was still crazy, and I was a bit exhausted by New Year's (no thanks to the adorable baby who decided to forgo sleeping for several nights), but I really did have a great holiday.

Here's a peek at what we did:

Wright Sisters (and families) Christmas Eve Crepe Breakfast
 Daren and Jason sporting their dino hats I made (they might actually fit by next winter...oops)

Christmas Morning!

Will LOVES candy canes! (Okay, he loves any kind of sugar)

 The Kings...we loved having them stay with us for Christmas, and Will loved having cousins around.

 Logan opening his very first present (and yes, he's eating the paper)

I didn't know our house could actually hold this many people, but apparently it can.

And after Christmas, the fun continued with a WEDDING! Stay tuned for how I attempted to be a florist and a photographer all in the same day.

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