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Wednesday February 8th 2023

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Holidays Highlight the Family Lifestyle

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Now that my children have grown and live far away, I admit the holiday season brings on bouts of homesickness. I miss everyone every day, but at this time of year the “sickness” grows stronger. To keep myself sane (or, at least a close facsimile), I enjoy listening to and watching the families that surround me and share their holiday plans, hopes, and activities as they unfold.

Like many, some of these families tend to lose themselves in the normal circumstances of day-to-day living, surviving, and taking care of business and jobs. But when the holidays roll around, there’s a marked shift in consciousness. Rather than arrange for a babysitter or child care, there’s talk of “we’re going to go _______ and do ________,” emphasis on the “we.” Is it because at other times of the year family isn’t important? Hardly. It’s because at other times of the year the circumstances of day-to-day living, surviving, and taking care of business and jobs are the norm, requiring the majority of time and energy any one human being possesses.

Holidays take families out of the norm for a bit, providing opportunity for families to place special activities and holiday requirements above the norm. And it’s a beautiful thing to behold.

If you’re a family who already lives the family lifestyle, keep living as an example for all you know to see. If you’re a family who would like to fashion a more favorable family lifestyle, take note of what you’re doing because of the holidays. Then, when the holidays are long gone, do what you can to extend your ability to include special activities and family time even though Christmas isn’t right around the corner. Bake a pie with the kiddos, even if it isn’t Thanksgiving. Go see a play, even if it isn’t The Nutcracker. Make a homemade card for Grandma even if it isn’t the start of a New Year. Let the holidays highlight the family lifestyle, but let that be just the beginning of many beautiful family-centered days to come.

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