On Notice—For the Holidays!

In honor of the season of joy and goodwill, I bring you my On Notice list–just for the holidays. So serve yourself a generous slice of fruitcake or mincemeat pie. Break off the head of that gingerbread cookie, warm from the oven, and put on some Christmas music, too. Then, sit back and enjoy!

Pretty to look at, but don't try to eat gingerbread. It's on notice!

Gingerbread: I’ve never been one for gingerbread. Yuck. There’s no disguising the strong taste.  Basically, any dessert item that contains chocolate is my preference and let’s be honest: gingerbread and chocolate don’t mix. Ergo, I’m putting gingerbread on notice!

Pressure and/or Stress: There’s all kinds of pressure and stress during the holidays–pressure to decorate, buy the perfect tree, send out holiday cards, get gifts for everyone while staying within budget, participate in cookie exchanges, and go caroling with friends. I, for one, am ignoring the pressure, and plan to enjoy my holiday stress-free.

Annual Holiday Letters: There are three kinds of mail you get this time of year from distant family and friends.  1) A holiday card with a personalized message; 2) A holiday card featuring a photo of the sender, with family, and a pre-printed message; 3) Or the annual letter that details every family member’s achievement, report cards, health issues, vacations, etc.  Well, I’m ok with the first two (though I always favor a personalized, written message over a pre-printed one). But please, consider the environment and the stress that most of us are already under, when sending a 3 or 4-page annual letter.

Airports: Airports are bad enough. The mob of people checking bags, going through security this time of year, not to mention the blizzard weather conditions, makes flying not worth it. If you ask me, best to stay home. You’ll thank me later.

Mincemeat: What exactly is this and does anyone really eat it anymore?  Unless you’re a descendant of Charles Dickens, I see no point to mincemeat pies.  The same goes for fruitcake. And, I don’t care what they say, putting any kind of meat in a dessert—minced or chopped—should be against the law. 

Gift cards: These are becoming more and more popular. But if you ask me, gift cards are a gift cop-out.  Basically, you’re telling your friends and loved ones, you don’t really care enough to consider what they’d like, so you’re giving them a gift card.  I ask you, is that really in the true spirit of Christmas?  Do you think the Three Wise Men brought along gift cards with the frankincense and myrrh??

Standing in Lines: There’s no getting away from the crowds this time of year, and with crowds come the lines. Lines at the post office, department stores, the movies, the grocery stores, the liquor stores, you name it.  Do what I do when I have to wait: Bring a book. Might as well make the most of your time in line.

I asked my son to decorate cookies for a cookie exchange. This was his best effort.

Cookie Exchange: Why must the holidays be all about sweets? My must we have cookie exchange parties that make those of us who cannot bake feel bad? Why not have a party where you bring your favorite take-out food? Remember, I’m going for less stress, not more.

Calories: And while we’re on the subject of sweets, I’m putting calories on notice. For once, calories should do us all a favor and go on hiatus. Come back in January. Be kind.

Christmas Songs: While fun at the beginning—like an old friend making its annual pilgrimage—even the best Christmas songs can overstay their welcome. Yet somehow I can’t stop listening to these catchy tunes.  Luckily (or not), these songs are played everywhere and there’s no escaping them. At least they’re not songs about clowns. I really don’t like clowns.

So that’s my list for the holidays.  What’s on your list?

Wishing you a very Happy (and stress-free) New Year!

8 thoughts on “On Notice—For the Holidays!

  1. May I put those stupid kits that make your car look like Rudolph on notice? I mean, really — it was funny the first time I saw one. The second time evoked a tiny smirk. The third and all subsequent: Just plain annoying!

    BTW, I think I’m going to begin my own Divorce/On Notice feature. I realize you didn’t start the trend, but yours is consistently executed better than others…so thanks for the inspiration, Monica!


  2. I love gingerbread in theory, but then I eat it and I realize that whoever invented it accidentally spilled a huge bottle of molasses in their cookies. I like molasses, but…not that much. Anyway, I liked this post 🙂

    • I think you just hit the nail on the head for me. I realize now that the reason I don’t like gingerbread is that I can’t stand molasses! I can’t eat anything that includes molasses as an ingredient. I love sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, honey, but it’s the molasses that ruins it for me. Double yuck! So I’m putting molasses on notice. Gingerbread, you just got a reprieve, thanks to Cappy! 🙂

  3. I have to agree with you on the Christmas letter. I find it pretty self-serving these days. Another thing that I don’t like about the holiday season: People who only donate in December because of the holidays. There are people in need all year long. But I disagree on gingerbread. If you get the right gingerbread, it’s delicious.

  4. Let’s just put the month of December on notice!
    I believe mincemeat is more of an English tradition. I don’t know anyone that eats it.
    Don’t get me started on the family “newsletter” crap. :-/

    • Oh yeah, I forgot about the family newsletter! LOL. The thing of it is I’m sure there’s a lot of stress in putting it together and there’s enough stress during the holidays, so why add to it?? Thanks for your input!

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