There are so many different opinions as to when to do what. Is it okay to start listening to Christmas music in October? November? The day after Thanksgiving? December 1st? There are the die-hard Christmas lovers that listen to Christmas music & watch Christmas movies whenever they want throughout the year. There are the [Scrooges?] who WILL NOT so much as breathe the word "Christmas" until Thanksgiving has had its day & that holiday is officially over.
Here are my thoughts.
First off, I'll admit that I'm a Christmas-addict. I can't help it, I look forward to the magic of Christmas allllll year long. Sometimes I'll buy a Christmas decoration in June, cause, um, hello - wayyy underpriced for its worth. And I'm always up for a steal.
I fall into the category of barely containing my excitement for Christmas until after Halloween [and even then, my eyes grow about 5 sizes bigger when I see the first sneak-peak of Christmas aisles being decorated at the stores.]... but I'm too much of a Halloween-lover to totally dismiss that holiday.
Thanksgiving, however, I feel is a terrific segue into the Christmas holiday. People huff & puff when they see others putting up the tree in early November. Or when the stores start playing Christmas music. But to that I have to ask, what is Thanksgiving about? It's about Family. Eating food. Coming together as one, and mainly about being Thankful. What is Christmas about? Well, it's about Christ. It's about Giving. It's about loving others. It's about Family. It's about coming together and showing kindness and gratitude for the people in your lives. Are they so different?
I get that people argue that Christmas has become "commercialized" and "worldy." ...buuuut... has it really? Sure, there are gifts we give to each other -- but that's just it.. we're GIVING them to each other. And is it so looked down on to accept a gift that someone else has put thought into giving you? You're allowing that person to serve & give, just as you're serving and giving to others. Everyone is different & has their own mindset, every family has their different traditions.. and I highly disbelieve that Christmas has completely lost the heartfelt feeling that makes it so great.
The magic of Christmas is so big - it isn't just about Santa and gifts, although that is a fun element [and is that really so bad to admit?]. It's about the coziness of Christmas lights dangling on everyone's home that puts smiles on complete strangers' faces as we drive around and gawk at the beautiful lights. It's about the nostalgic feeling of traditions & memories & being with those you love - even if that's the only time you've seen them the entire year. It's about the familiar music that makes our hearts swell with peace & happiness as we sing along to the timeless lyrics. It's about supporting dancers & artists & musicians who've practiced their hearts out for months and are finally sharing their talents with thousands as we attend their performances. It's about the traditional treats we look forward to making and eating and sharing with friends & family. It gives us a reason to do holiday crafts and activities and go out to several events. It's about enjoying the pure joy of selflessly giving to those in need and seeing those we love most feel loved. It's the one time of year that snow is actually welcomed & savored, as opposed to despised & unwanted. It's about so much more than we even give it credit for.
Why then, is it SO bad to welcome the pure magic of Christmas into our hearts and lives before Thanksgiving? Aren't Thanksgiving and Christmas friends? There's no room for hate and disapproval when it comes to Christmas, so to those who shake their heads at us Christmas-lovers for allowing Christmas to come alive again whenever we choose to [whether it be before Thanksgiving or even before Halloween] - I sadly shake my head back that they can't open their minds to the beauty of enjoying all that Christmas encompasses and provides to those who open their arms to it. And it's not that I expect everyone to start celebrating it before Thanksgiving - I say, start celebrating it when you want to celebrate it. But I appreciate those who don't judge me for starting to celebrate it when I choose to celebrate it, just as I don't judge anyone else for celebrating it when they choose to.
I can agree that stores opening for Black Friday at 6pm ON THANKSGIVING is too much -- give the damn holiday its day. Aside from that, I say, let's just all cool our jets and allow everyone to celebrate and enjoy the beauty of Thanksgiving and Christmas as one perfect time of year where we come together with family and friends & show love and gratitude and kindness toward one another. Cheers!