“I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live. That each of them may eat and drink, and find satisfaction in all their toil—this is the gift of God.” Ecclesiastes 3: 12-13.
The holidays can be both joyous and stressful for us mamas. Decorating, buying and wrapping gifts, numerous parities and get-togethers, events at school—it can all become too much for us as moms as we over-schedule and over-commit. Thanksgiving and Christmas seem to pass by so quickly because we are too busy. We may find ourselves relieved when it is all over and not realize until later that we missed the little moments; the joyous moments that this beautiful season offers us.
For the first time since I became a mother twenty-four years ago, the table at Thanksgiving will hold only four chairs; one for me, one for my husband, and one for each of my daughters. As with so many other things in this crazy year of the coronavirus, both of our families have cancelled any large gatherings.
I have been thinking back to the years when my girls were little and we traveled every year for Thanksgiving. Everything I planned needed to be so intentional. I had to make sure that I had snacks and games for the car ride. I had to be prepared for the inevitable meltdowns that one or both of my daughters would have from being surrounded by too many people, too much noise, too much food, no naps, and serious over-stimulation.
To be honest with you, I began to dread those large family gatherings, instead of cherishing them. I got so caught up in the hustle and bustle of the day, that I didn’t pay attention when the girls were doing the wishbone with their grandpa, when they sat cuddled up with their grandma, when they were giggling while playing with their cousins.
It is like the sunset that radiates across the clouds turning them molten orange with bands of pink, and then all of a sudden it is gone. The same is true of these precious moments with our little ones; it is here one minute and gone the next and you can never get that time back.
Mamas, I don’t know what your holidays are going to look like this year, but I encourage you to take this unique opportunity to enjoy mothering your babies by saying yes to less. Try not to over-plan, over-schedule, and over-do this year. Take time out to appreciate the little moments. Find the beauty of our Lord in everything and allow joy to be the main course at your holiday dinners.
Don’t miss the beautiful sunset. Saying yes to less will help you connect with your children in a new and meaningful way as we celebrate the most wonderful time of the year.
Blessings as you say yes to less,
Susie and the Help Club for Moms Team
For more information about Susie’s ministry, Between the Gardens, please connect with her on her website, susieoneal.org.