How to Strip Your Holidays Naked

To help you survive the holidays, here’s a new version of my original Naked Holidays post. I wish you the best as you make choices about how far you wish to strip your holidays naked in order to survive the holiday season.

1. Choose Your Holiday Purpose

As I write this post, cyberspace is filled with shopping deals and with news of the United Nation’s Climate Change Summit in Paris. Talk about mixed messages! Are we supposed to shop till we drop, or are we supposed to reduce our carbon footprint?

To answer that question, I recommend we each choose a purpose for our holidays. Your holiday purpose can include as much or as little of shopping and environmentalism as you wish. You can delve as deep or as shallow as you wish into the reason for the season. Religion? Family? Food? Decorations?  You choose.


2. Choose Your Gift Giving

If you choose to include gifts as part of your holiday, please choose those gifts wisely. Here I’m not just talking about the environmental impacts of the manufacture, shipment, and disposal of things. I’m helping you make sure you won’t regret any credit card bills and storage locker fees that might follow a mountain of gift-giving. For low stress at holiday time and year round, too, make wise gift choices, ok?


3. Choose Your Visitors

To survive the holidays, choose your visitors and visits carefully. But please, as a special favor to me, include grandparents in your holidays. I speak both as a grandmother and as person who misses her own dearly departed parents and grandparents. I also speak as a person who believes that family togetherness is a core purpose of holidays. Whatever you do, though, remember that you have the power to make your own visitor and visit choices from among your family and friends. Here’s a comic I created to help you with your choices:


4. Choose Your Decorations 

If you have children, they might insist on holiday decorations. You, on the other hand, might remember the work involved in decorating and later taking down decorations. You have a choice to make here. You can decorate, or you can ban decorations, or, surprise: you can allow your children to do all the decorating. If you don’t trust your children to take down the decorations in a timely and tidy manner after the holidays, I suggest you require a decoration deposit.


5. Choose Your Food

I’m guessing you don’t want to gain weight or live with sugared-up children bouncing off the walls this holiday season. Right? If so, you have choices to make. And those choices start with your grocery list. Here’s the thing: If you don’t bring sugary treats into your home, you and your children won’t eat them.

Instead of splurging on holiday treats, how about splurging on those nutritious items that cost more than you’re usually willing to pay? Go ahead, buy the ingredients for the salad of your dreams, or the fruit arrangement of your wildest imagination. I promise your kids will survive. Who knows, they might even enjoy your nutritious grocery store splurges!


6. Choose Your Events

You have the choice to decline holiday invitations. Invitations are choices, not commands. You don’t need to attend zillions of holiday events. Except, of course, if the events include your children. Then sorry, you’re stuck. There’s simply no escaping school holiday concerts and piano recitals involving your kids, except, maybe via earplugs.

The Holiday Calendar Beast


Let’s all aspire to serenity-filled, relaxing holidays. We have the power to choose how much to strip our holidays naked, down to their relaxing cores. I leave you with this holiday prayer:

Screen Shot 2015-11-27 at 6.49.05 PM


Acknowledgements and Credits

I created the comics via the Comic-O-Matic website of Nina Paley and Margo Burns. (Thanks!)

This blog article is part of the Hoagies’ Gifted Education Page December 2015 Blog Hop on Surviving the Holidays. I thank my friends at Hoagies’ Gifted Education Page and elsewhere for their inspiration, support, and suggestions.

Please click on the graphic below (created by Pamela S Ryan–thanks!) to see to the titles, blog names, and links of other Hoagies’ Blog Hop participants.

Dec 2015 Blog Hop Graphic


8 Comments on “How to Strip Your Holidays Naked”

  1. Love the comics, and the advice! Happy Holidays! 🙂

  2. Thank you for the ideas, and for bringing levity to a time of year which can be stressful.

  3. Mary says:

    Nice! And not too many comics. I especially like #2.

  4. Paula Prober says:

    Wenda. This is a clever way to make some important points. People have choices over the holidays. Yes! I’m particularly interested in getting people to buy and waste less. We just can’t afford the environmental impact any more!

  5. Sarah says:

    LOVE IT!! Can you please create a similar article/comic pair for stripping down your work life?

  6. I love the power of choice. It can be easy to get caught in a trap of expectations and frustrations. Thanks for the reminder that choosing not to do it all or to say no can be liberating. Great post!

  7. Wenda, Great reminder that we don’t have to mindlessly go along with others’ and our own past expectations for the holidays, and have the ability to actively make choices that fit our values.

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