Holidays, to each their own month!

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Pumpkins

Image by DrBacchus via Flickr

Halloween lasts the entire month of October for me and culminates on October 31 in a glassy-eyed sugar rush. I love everything about it. Leaves of orange, red, and gold twirling to the ground on a crisp autumn breeze. Homemade apple butter. Caramel corn. Pumpkin festivals. Carving jack-o-lanterns. Ghost stories. Scary movies.  Haunted houses. Zombie paintball. Corn mazes. Trick-or-treating. Hayrides. As a child I had no idea what delights Halloween held. My parents were… well… paranoid, and always convinced that around every corner lurked someone whose sole mission in life was to kill or kidnap me. I discovered Halloween with my own children. I began trick-or-treating at age nineteen and continued until I was thirty. Sometimes, it’s good to be short.

Thanksgiving is pumpkin pie (which I loathe), turkey, and family, and a house full of way too many kids and dogs, but somehow it always works. This year I have to work and will stay home with the Geriatric Beagle Brigade instead of boarding them, while the rest of the family goes to Grandma’s.

I love Christmas.  Visiting Santa Claus. Snowflakes. Watching How the Grinch Stole Christmas (NOT the Jim Carey version) and our other traditional Can’t Have Christmas Without ‘Em movies. Singing Christmas carols in the car (badly). Transiberian Orchestra. Leaving cookies and Kahlua under the tree for Santa – doesn’t everyone do that?? Kisses under mistletoe. Wrestling with unruly strings of Christmas lights. Getting together with family we don’t see often enough…remembering why we don’t visit them the rest of the year. Reciting Twas the Night Before Christmas, which I’ve had memorized since second grade. And the two best things about Christmas for me – joy in a child’s eyes and (drumroll!) Christmas enchiladas.

Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas. Notice that I gave them each a paragraph of their own. They should be separate. They each deserve their own month. I don’t want to shop for a new broom and pointy hat with Christmas stockings two aisles away. It just feels
wrong.

On November first, the day after Halloween, my neighbors got out their Christmas lights, their creepy skeletal robotic reindeer, and a giant, leering, inflatable Santa Claus. They’re breathing down our necks with Christmas before we’ve even had our turkey and green bean casserole. It’s just plain rude.

I want to enjoy each holiday as it comes, I want to slow down and savor them all. They’re each different and spectacular in their own ways, with their own memories and traditions. I don’t want to miss a moment.