Mesmerized and Overwhelmed by Christmas

I am so overwhelmed by Christmas this year. I don’t know how else to explain all of the staring at the ornaments (still in their boxes) and the lack of Christmas shopping I have engaged in. Usually, by now, I have half of my gifts wrapped and under the tree. I have been doing some serious procrastinating this year.

Overwhelmed and mesmerized by Christmas Santa Camel
Overwhelmed and mesmerized by Christmas Santa Camel. Look how smug he looks.

The other day Tiny-Small and I were shopping for Christmas lights and a big, red bow. I just stood in front of the bows staring in awe at the selection. This man and his daughter were roaming the aisle throwing every other item into their cart and I could not even choose a bow. The man, seeing me staring, thought he and his daughter were in my way and told his daughter to move, but I told them, “You are fine. I am just mesmerized by Christmas.” He laughed, then looked nervous, then steered his daughter to the next aisle.

overwhelmed and mesmerized by Christmas
overwhelmed and mesmerized by Christmas lights.

Meanwhile, Tiny-Small was touching everything she could reach and proclaiming how beautiful the sparkly, shiny, barking, blinking, ugly angels and tinsel that is Christmas all were. I was still mesmerized. Christmas is a bizarre holiday when you step back and look at it. We spend all of our money on toys that break and eat too many sweets and decorate our houses in gaudy extravagance. Yet, I still love it. I do love Christmas. I think I do anyway.


This year is just different for some reason. I am loving it quietly and from the inside. I am making many of my gifts this year because I feel like in the last 20 years or so I have bought everything for everyone. I mean, what more could they ever want or need? Tiny-Small is the only family member outgrowing her clothes. Everyone else has a house full of stuff. Nobody really needs anything and probably just buys what they want to anyway. I have this overwhelming urge to protect Christmas this year. It’s not supposed to be just about the stuff. It’s supposed to be about people and love and hope for the future, right?

Christmas tree

So, hopefully I will get my house decorated today. My trees are up, but they just have lights on them. They need some ornaments. Then I can focus on getting my gifts made. Then I can start the baking. I think, at least for this year, I am going to stay out of the stores as much as possible. All of the flashing, motorized singing is mesmerizing me into a Christmas coma of some kind. I think this year I am going to honor the quiet I feel in my soul and aim to keep things simple. What are you doing this year to honor your holiday traditions? Are you making any changes to your holiday so the traditions you create become more aligned with your personal values?

17 thoughts on “Mesmerized and Overwhelmed by Christmas”

  1. Do you have to put your tree up bc of your animals? I was just curious from your picture. I’m kinda slacking this year. We just bought our tree this weekend and put it up. I have yet to buy anything yet. Unfortunately I’m not creative like you so I can’t make any presents. I did do some crafts with DD and I made my first wreath this year. So that was new for me. I’m trying to help Sylvia understand the meaning of Christmas….. Which so far just means presents!

    1. Maybe that is part of why Christmas feels different this year. I am thinking about my daughter. What will Christmas mean to her? it’s not easy being a parent.

      You sound pretty crafty to me!

      I put the tree up high this year because our youngest dog will take items right off the tree and run away with them. For some reason having it elevated makes her think it is off limits.

  2. I like your mesmerized face. 🙂

    As of last year, we don’t send paper Christmas cards any more. I feel just the eensiest weensiest bit bad about letting that tradition go… but mostly freeeeEEEEE!

    1. Christmas cards are getting too expensive to mail and I would imagine it would be freeing not to have to deal with them! I am in the middle of writing mine. I only send them because I like to get them.

    1. I think in the past I have been motivated to find the perfect gift. I spent a lot of time shopping and thinking about shopping. When I think about it now it was almost like trying to create the perfect Christmas or to fill a void of some kind. Maybe a need to please other people? This year I want to focus on experiences. Making cookies with my mom and sister, going to see the Christmas lights and decorations. Making memories instead of stressing over gift giving just seems like a good way to celebrate this year.

  3. For years I’ve thought Christmas time has become overwhelming and materialistic. I love the decorating and baking, Family time. Remembering the true meaning of the season. There is a calming that comes with sitting and watching the Christmas tree lights. Its a time of year to reflect and be thankful. I don’t like the way the stores have made it into this need to spend and spend some more. I always try to buy something small for everyone just as a token of love. It doesn’t have to be about getting or giving. It can simply be about sharing and caring. I have to add tradition to that as well, especially having kids. I believe that my kids have remembered more of our traditions that the gifts they received over the years.<3

    1. Yes! The traditions stick with you. I remember those things from my childhood much more than the gifts. Sitting in the dark and looking at the tree with some eggnog or maybe a glass of wine is one of my favorite holiday activities.

  4. You, too? I am not my normal Christmas zealot self this year. It may have something to do with it being 75 degrees in CHICAGO today. I normally love the warm weather, but wearing shorts while assembling the Christmas tree just felt wrong.

    1. I know. That is weird. New Mexico is warm like that too and since I am from the East coast Christmas never feels normal here. I feel ridiculous putting my little village up with fake snow.

  5. Best to be simple!! I totally get you that it is so easy to get caught up in all the bling being displayed in the stores!! I love the idea of a simple holiday season!!

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