Picture Perfect

Dear festive friends,

How do you do it? I have seen dozens of filtered Christmas light photos of happy children helping hang lights on beautiful trees. The kids are smiling. The floor is vacuumed, and the lights are all working.

How do you do it?

Five minutes into our decorating session I transformed into the Grinch. The lights on our pre-lit tree were half out. My children were dumping out decorations in different corners of the room and Santa hats and stuffed snowmen were scattered everywhere.

After successfully unpacking every single Christmas decoration we own – while I snapped “wait for me” at them – they got tired. I was left with a half-lit tree and a huge mess.

I stayed up until midnight two days in a row trying to get stuff done. One night while fumbling trying to hang a Santa Claus cardholder I realized I didn’t even like the stupid thing.

So I packed it back up and sat down for a break.

That’s when I scrolled through my Facebook feed and saw so many cute pictures of happy holiday decorating activities.

So I’m back to my original question – how do you do it?

Do you prep all the decorations ahead of time and have them right ready to hang?

Do you clean your house before busting out the holiday décor?

Do you take anti-stress medication?

Am I the only one hollering at my kids when we’re supposed to be having a family-bonding-Christmas-is-coming moment?

I’m feeling some major mom guilt and my Christmas cheer radar is reading below zero.

Maybe I should accept the fact that I can’t have quiet, thoughtful, reflective moments while putting out our Christmas decorations. Maybe I should save myself the heartache and decorate when the majority of my kids are at school.

Then again maybe I should relax and revile in the chaos. So what if we don’t have any Kodak Christmas-card moments in front of our magical tree.

At least we have a tree. And working lights (after we spent hours picking off the burnt out, pre-lit nightmare cords and restringing new lights, only to find out that we didn’t buy enough new lights and had to go to the store to get two more strands.)

Oh, and I did manage to a couple completely candid shots. Like this blurry picture.




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