‘Tis the season.

Yes. It’s that time of year….the season meant to be about peace, love, joy, and good tidings, among other things.

It’s starting earlier than ever, or so it seems. Before we know it, it’ll start before Labor Day….which, as we all know, happens to be in September people I’ve got a boatload of catalogs beginning to pile up in the recycling bin. Everyday for weeks now the mailbox is crammed full of catalogs. Catalogs from companies I have never ordered from…and from companies I have never even heard of. Annoying too is the fact that it’s often difficult to throw away catalogs without succumbing to a quick peek through them.  If said catalogs could express themselves I’m sure they’d register delight as in “made you look.” Though I am getting better at financial restraint as we approach our golden years, self-control often gets difficult when I open the pages of, say Sundance, a catalog that I’ve loved for years.  img_0555

Anyhow, I was delighted to be able to have sis and company visit for a few days last week. For me, our precious family time means more wine than usual, wonderful food, nephew snuggles, and the opportunity to shop with someone other than myself. To that end on this visit sis and I leave the boys watching football and we head out for shopping and some serious sis-bonding time.

We head to Bridge Street, an outdoor mall. It’s the first place my husband took me during our first trip to Huntsville, when he was considering a job offer over four years ago. From the airport straight to the mall. Pretty sneaky. I can’t complain. After all, I brought The Poodle into our lives with sly tactics of my own.

“See, Huntsville has some of the shops you like to frequent,” hubby had said as we strolled hand-in-hand, window-shopping, on that hot and impossibly humid May evening.

True. I was hopeful about the whole move to middle-earth thing…. until the next morning under the light of day. As we drove around town my heart sank to my toes.  Rocket-man has taken me to the middle of the earth.  How can I possibly live here?

But I digress….back to the present.

We’ve arrived at the mall and Sis and I have just stepped out of the car. As we turn the corner to head to our first shop we practically run into a ginormous white Christmas deer decoration that is already planted in place…its large red bow fixed about the neck dances softly in the afternoon breeze. Wreaths with red bows and shiny ornaments adorn every light post and Christmas music streams through outdoor speakers. It doesn’t help that at 88 degrees its uncharacteristically hot on this late October day.

I must be getting old I think to myself.  Really, I am not trying to be all Bah Humbug….but for goodness sake…. It isn’t even Halloween yet and everything is decked out for Christmas!  Sis voices the same sentiment before I am on to the next thought.

“I know,” I said. “It seems to happen earlier every year. I get it; businesses have to stay competitive and all but its ridiculous that the commercialization of Christmas has gotten so out of hand that they start pushing it on us well before Halloween. In effect, Christmas is three months long!

“I shouldn’t be surprised really, I continued.  “My neighbors had their Halloween decorations up in their yards in early September!”

“Well, if Christmas advertising and all starts in early October, I suppose I can see why people are adjusting their seasonal decorating,” replies sis.

No wonder people get crazy and often mean-spirited well before December 25th.  By the time Christmas day actually rolls around we are thoroughly sick of the season.

I catch a hold of my growing negativity and a light bulb goes off.  You know what?  Let’s nip this in the bud, like now. I vow to not let Bah Humbug happen to me this year.  Last year, our holiday season was a complete wash.  A nightmare, if you will, filled with tears, months of unrelenting stress, hospital runs and emotions run amok as we handled our mother’s decline.

Let the Christmas cheer begin!

Let the Christmas cheer begin!

So I say:  Bring on binge-watching Elf, White Christmas and every other holiday movie…now!  Bring on Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer a hundred times!  Bring on Christmas lights and Santa, eggnog and peppermint bark (OK…well, not the eggnog…yuck!  I’ll happily leave that for Rocket-man).

So, I’ve got my credit card at the ready to place my order of Panettone from my Olio Carli catalog.

‘Tis the season! Let the Christmas cheer begin…..  Yippee! is my joyful shout.

But ask me again in another week.