No apology for seasonal swag

?Christmas isn?t a season. It?s a feeling.?

?Edna Ferber

The demons have been haunting me successfully for about 10 days now. I can?t say I haven?t encouraged them by my own reckless behavior. I knew I shouldn?t have opened that door. But the temptation overtook me, along with my imagination fueled by history and memories. And Hallmark.

Hallmark, oh Hallmark. Why do you and your ?Countdown to Christmas? tempt me so? I have fallen under your spell of Christ?mas tree farms, glamorized small-town cheer and ice-skating rinks. These are the things holiday movies are made of. And the truth is, I love you.

And so Christmas begins. And by Christmas, of course, I mean the entire two months of November and December. I won?t feel guilty for feeling the spirit before the designated date on the calendar. Because haven?t you heard? Anticipation is half the fun.

I can?t give up an entire month of sincere holiday spirit in the name of turkey. I have plenty of room for both. To me, Thanksgiving encompasses a similar spirit anyway.

Truthfully, if I were forced to compare holidays, Christmas brings out just as much thankfulness, if not more. And it?s sparkly.

But I don?t have to choose. I get both. I get the turkey and dressing, pie and potatoes. And half of what gets me through this day of extreme indulgence and bloating is Black Friday.

And what will I do on Black Friday? Not shop. I will drag boxes from my basement and blare Christmas music. We will bring Christmas out of our heads and up from the basement and throw it in every corner of our home.

But sorry, naysayers, even if my tree doesn?t go up until after Thanksgiving, I have already started celebrating. I?ve been shopping for two months. I have this year?s ornaments ready to go. I have watched eight Christ?mas movies. Two of them twice. I have made my youngest daughter practice ?Jingle Bells? on the piano ?one more time? more than one more time.

And today, a full week before Thanksgiving, I crossed the line. Nothing but full-blown holly jolly up in here. I gave my house swag.

My favorite holiday decoration is the greenery that frames the living room, where our tree will soon stand. It is officially hung? albeit alone?waiting for mistletoe that will hang from its center.

By the time Thanksgiving Day gets here, I?ll be knee deep in Christmas. There?s no hiding from Hallmark.

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