Why You Are Doing New Years Wrong

Everyone starts the new year in the same boring way. We go down town in the crowds and cold to watch the fireworks or the ball drop or, the slightly less adventurous, stay at home and watch in the comfort of our pajamas on tv. We stay up late and go to parties and toast the new year at midnight. It is all very fun but it is actually the wrong way to start a new year (I just decided this and I always have to he right).

Now that I know that all of our traditions are the wrong way to start I have decided to compile a list (for future generations) of the right way to start a new year.

1) Get your hair done. 

We always start our new year feeling bad about who we are. We come up with resolutions like lose weight or swear less which loosely translated into “be better.” Why do we have to be so down on ourselves?  Why can’t we start a year feeling really good about who we are and how we look? Why not start out the year with a shot of confidence? Stop putting off a new hair style or outfit and do something that makes you feel goid about yourself. That is a way better way to “be better” anyway.

2) Do laundry/Change your sheets

This isn’t a metaphor. I’m being fully serious. There is almost nothing better than climbing into bed on clean sheet day. Or knowing that every outfit you own is clean and at the ready. You can wear anything you want. You can BE anything you want. You’ll feel good. You’ll be good. 

Just change your sheets. It’s easy and it feels good. Clean sheet day is the best.

3) get a good night sleep.

I know this goes against everything we believe about New Year’s Eve as a society but trust me this is the right way to start the year. Just go crawl into your freshly made bed at a decent hour and get some sleep. I have stayed up to see the new year every year and I have yet to see anything happen. There is no bright green flash and there is no calendar police, there isn’t even a parade. It’s okay to miss all of the nothing. Get a good night sleep and actually feel good on the first day of your new year.

4) get dressed

I have not been ending the year well. The thought of putting on jeans instead of my pajama pants almost makes me want to cry. But I am still going to get dressed, maybe in something cute, on New Year’s Day. I’m not going to start my new year in sweat pants nursing a headache, again.

And finally

5) relax

It’s going to be a good year.

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Skipping Christmas

Yesterday I counted out my pennies (because I’m broke… again), went to the store, and bought the few ingredients I needed to make dark chocolate and sea salt chocolate chip cookies for a Christmas cookie exchange (chocolate chip cookies are the only kind I can make). While half-hazardly mixing the ingredients I decided it was the perfect time to start watching Christmas movies. I gathered up all of our old christmas vhs movies from the basement and threw in Christmas with the Kranks, a Tim Allen movie from a few years ago about a couple who decides to skip Christmas and go on a cruise.

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Normally I really enjoy this movie. I think it is kind of funny but this year I found it almost disturbing.

I found myself irritated with the couple’s friends and neighbors for the way they responded to the Kranks’ decision to sip Christmas. They acted as though it was a cardinal sin to not celebrate Christmas. They acted as though it was selfish to not decorate your house and throw an expensive christmas party on Christmas Eve. This is a secular Christmas movie. The neighborhood’s shock has nothing to do with them wondering why this family had chosen not to celebrate the birth of our lord and savior it was all about the missing Christmas decorations.

It made me mad. It may come as a shock to some people but there is no law requiring people, even Christians, to celebrate Christmas.

I spent most of the movie wondering what the neighborhood would do if a jewish couple, or muslim, or any of the other faith groups who don’t celebrate Christmas moved in. The movie would have been a lot darker and a lot less cute if everything about the movie was the same except the religion of the couple.

I also couldn’t help but wonder how the neighbors would have reacted if the couple had been having financial troubles and were just trying to save a little money but not going all out for Christmas. At the beginning of the movie Mr. Krank goes through and figures out that the spent $6,100 on Christmas the year before (I can’t afford that).

By the end I was mad. I wanted the couple to go on their cruise and just let their neighbors be angry. Making the people you live around conform to your Christmas ideas is not what Christmas is about even a little bit.

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My annoyance got me thinking about my own Christmas traditions.

Unlike the couple in the movie I probably wouldn’t choose to skip Christmas although, going on a cruise does sound pretty nice.

For me Christmas has very little to do with the decorations, the cookie exchanges, or the presents, as nice as all of those things are. And it certainly isn’t about getting everything done so Christmas morning is perfect. I refuse to let Santa Clause be a behavior enforcement for children. I try not to worry if my Christmas decorations are as good as my neighbors.

I would rather celebrate Christmas over the whole month of December by telling people that I care about them exactly that, I care about them. That is probably the reason I got so annoyed during the movie. Everything the neighbors were upset about were things that I refuse to care about. I think there are more important things.

Have you seen the movie? Could you tell me your thoughts on it as well?