8 Guilty Pleasures that Make the Holidays Even More Fun
I swear to you that I am not a bah, humbug kind of person.
In fact, I love the holidays, and one of the things that I most look forward to is that business slows, relatives eventually go home and I have hit every bullet point on my Christmas “To-Do” list.
On the 2nd of January I will need to start behaving like an adult again, but for now, I am sharing some of my holiday (not) guilty pleasures.
Are you attending any holiday parties? Whether cocktails or church, you need to ask yourself this: Why eat grown up food when you can eat cookies? Don’t you get enough well-balanced, healthy meals throughout the year?
I’m not suggesting that you sit in the back of the closet with a box of gingerbread men in your lap. No, whether you are at a party or in the vestibule of your church, you can easily wave a cookie in one hand and a drink in the other and people won’t judge. They will simply think that you are being festive. Take advantage. This is one of the few times all year you can eat like this in public.
Grandma’s Having a Time Out
All year long I fill up my calendar and show up on time. The antidote for this schedule on steroids is a pajamathon. You must stay in your pajamas all day and if you insist upon showering, then change into clean pajamas afterward.
Don’t worry about answering the door. You’re in your 60s; you don’t owe the world an explanation for hanging out in flannel PJs and socks all day if you want.
This often-over-looked resource for the art of doing nothing is now available on every computer from Hulu to Netflix to Amazon and is truly one of the great indulgences of the holidays. If you have Amazon, check out Good Girls Revolt. If you have Netflix, all the past episodes of New Girl or Friends will keep you entertained with marathon viewing. And don’t forget Home and Garden TV for a real binge-watching treat.
This is a new twist on the more trending “mindfulness.” Instead of being mindful, you simply space out with You Tube cat and/or puppy videos. Make sure to laugh out loud to get the full benefit of the mindlessness exercise being suggested. Wine optional.
Finger muscles can get neglected all year long. But you can re-build up your finger muscles as you turn pages of your favorite Christmas catalogues, The New York Times, Rolling Stone Magazine or any other glossy that you can hold in your hands.
You must stretch out on the couch to do this exercise. While your fingers may ache a little from so much activity, know that you can stop at any time, place magazine across your belly like a little tent and take a nap.
For those who must get dressed and out of the house, why not make a list of all the films that you want to see? My list for the season includes Arrival, Hidden Figures, Jackie, Manchester By the Sea and possibly the new Star Wars… unless I get swallowed up by Netflix.
Getting In the Mood
Taking serious down time for one’s self is not for the faint of heart. Sometimes you need something to help put you in the mood. Here’s my list: hot baths, hot showers, home pedicures, good wine, chocolate and cozy socks.
The Permission Slip
If you are still having difficulty with the idea that you are entitled to relax and do nothing, try writing a note to yourself and posting it on the fridge where everyone – especially you – can see it. It can look something like this: Dear Universe, Please excuse (fill in your name) from all the good deeds, responsibilities and obligations that she usually takes on. Cut her some slack. She needs a couple of days off and will return to all the obligation stuff in the New Year.
When the kids and grandkids have gone home, the leftovers have been stored in Tupperware and the wrapping paper has been recycled, get a little naughty and put your feet up. You deserve it, and I’ll be thinking of you as I binge watch and eat cookies in my pajamas.
Thank you Sixty and Me readers for an interesting, fun and enlightening year. I have a warm place in my heart for you and raise my glass to your awesomeness. Peace on earth. Goodwill. And joy to all.
Which guilty holiday pleasure are you planning on enjoying this year? How are you going to get in the holiday spirit this year? What TV series are you planning to binge watch? We look forward to hearing your thoughts as we wrap up 2016.
Stephanie Raffelock is a novelist and a blogger. In her Sixty and Me column, she explores writing, living fully and loving well. She enjoys literary representation by Dystel, Goderich and Bouret in New York. You can find Stephanie at StephanieRaffelock.com or Tweet her @Sraffelock.