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Embrace the Griswalds, Messy and Love

by Brenda Wilt

Here are three things I've learned over the years:
1. Ditch your unrealistic expectations. If you're like most people, your Christmas is likely to be more like the Griswalds' in "Christmas Vacation" than a Norman Rockwell painting.

So what if Martha Stewart would have a coronary if she walked into your house. (Don't invite her! Clean what you can see and shove everything else in drawers and closets that are unlikely to be opened. That's what they're there for.).

So what if the tree leans a bit. (Tie it to the curtain rod, as my dad used to do!)

So what if Grandpa falls asleep on the couch and snores.

Embrace your family in all its messiness and imperfection and appreciate life for what it is, rather than mourn for what you wish it were.

2. Don't be afraid to skip any traditions, conventions, or practices that no longer bring you joy. I firmly believe that when something in your life becomes a burden rather than a blessing, it's time to re-evaluate.

Perhaps you need an attitude adjustment or perhaps you just need to say "You know, maybe we don't really need forty-seven dozen cookies and individually handcrafted Christmas cards for our 87 family members."

3. Remember that Christmas isn't about human perfection. Take a lesson from the "Whos down in Whoville," who knew that Christmas will come no matter what we do or don't do, have or don't have.

Because in the end, it really isn't about us. It's about the greatest Love the world has ever known. The measure with which we reflect that Love is the true measure of our Christmas spirit and the only thing that will bring us lasting joy.

Wishing everyone a blessed Christmas and a happy, healthy New Year.

Brenda Wilt
Associate Editor



I love the tree tied with the curtain - very endearing and such a reminder that things do not need to be perfect!

Love what you shared...thank you.

In this article about healthy family traditions we talk about traditions. So true to let what no longer serves, go.

Thanks for adding to this conversation.

All the Best, and More!

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