The excitement of Christmas is over, unfortunately (or maybe thankfully depending on your perspective!). The thrill of watching kids open their presents, the smell of the new pine tree, the joy of singing Christmas carols and hymns, the taste of fresh-baked warm cookies, and the many hugs and well wishes from family and strangers alike.
Now we settle into our ordinary lives, without the pretty decorations everywhere or parties to look forward to. We have mis-sized gifts to return, which is a chore more than an anticipated activity.
Yet in the letdown of post-holidays, there are still many ways we can let the joy of Christmas linger in our hearts and days. We can still have the excitement of seeking God in the ordinary tasks of our everyday lives.
There are thank-you cards or letters you could write, to savor the joy of the gifts given and received well after they’ve been opened.
There are people you received greeting cards from whom you haven’t seen in too long but always write on their cards, “We should get together soon!” Call them and set up a visit over the coming weekends.
There may be an elderly relative who could use help taking down the tree or decorations, which would give you both extra time to visit and share the memories of the holidays.
Your priest may need a home to visit now that the busyness of Advent is over.
Plan a play-date for your children to make a craft or play a new game they got from Santa.
Look to the future and start planning that summer vacation for your family so that you have something else to look forward to.
As you return to your normal routine, look for ways to keep the joy of the newborn Christ in your mind and heart. Keep one of your crèches out for another month, attend a weekday Mass once a week, pray a Rosary or continue to seek ways to act kindly toward others.
St. Teresa of Calcutta recommends:
We shall not waste our time in looking for extraordinary experiences but live by pure faith, ever watchful and ready for His coming by doing our day-to-day ordinary duties with extraordinary love and devotion.
Copyright 2020 Colleen Mallette