Category Archives: Wit

Christmas

Christmas is my favorite time of the year. It always has been. Santa was never a vital part of the tradition at our house,  and while I’m convinced my parents are selling drugs to pay for their Christmas habit*, the presents are not the things that have stuck with me from years of Christmas past.

Over the past couple years I have continually heard people talk about how much they despise this time of year. Ninety-nine percent of those people have been true believers in the Christ of Christmas. They talk about the consumerism and materialism and all the other worldly isms that have ruined the holiday. I absolutely ackowledge and take issue with the blasphemy of making Christmas consumer driven. However, I also take issues with believers writing off the entire season.

If we are truly offended by the disgusting distortion of Christmas presented by our culture, what are we doing about it? It isn’t enough for believers to “just get through the holidays.”

If we want Christmas to be a celebration of the Word of Life, entering our depravity to save us from our wretchedness it will take more than skipping Black Friday sales.  We will have to do more than avoid consumerism by creating a culture of Christ-centered celebration within our circles of influence.

The culture my family has created is that of joy and peace at Christmas. Part of that peace is skipping the “Christmas loans**” and worries about needing to one-up Aunt Judith*** with the latest and greatest gifts. The joy comes from an active participation in the holy parts of the holiday – honoring the Word made flesh, the living and breathing Gospel, the Way of salvation opening to all would believe.

It’s time to take back the holy days. It’s time to stop sitting back and complaining. It’s time to offer the world an alternative to the over-spending, the stress and the selfishness of the culture’s Christmas.

It’s time to offer them Jesus.

*This is an completely unfounded and unrealistic accusation that I am at least 99.9% certain is untrue.

**I seriously saw a sign in town advertising Christmas loans. There simply aren’t words strong enough to address that nonsense!

***I do not have an Aunt Judith. If you do I promise I mean no offense. The name has been made up to protect the innocent.

 

Edit: I’ve been told that my parents do not, in fact, sell drug, but they may possibly have sold a kidney or two on the black market to support the Christmas habit.****
****I think they were just joking…
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It’s Co-Blogger Friday! (But it’s Saturday)

Most days at work I spend a little time chatting with my sister, Jennifer. Yesterday we started a new trend called “Co-Blogger Friday.” Unfortunately I didn’t finish my post yesterday, but I think the title still applies. We did most of the work yesterday. It just hasn’t appeared yet. So to kick off Co-Blogger Friday we’ve compiled a list of suggestions about how not to be a creepy creepy wedding planner.
  1. Don’t stare at body parts no matter how adorned they are with jewelry.This is where the whole idea began. Jennifer was sitting behind a girl in class that was wearing a lovely, sparkly ring on the all-important finger. So she asked me if I thought it would be appropriate to ask her when she’s getting married. Then a conversation ensued about how creepy it would be for the girl to realize that Jennifer had been staring at her hand even though she doesn’t even know the girl’s name.
  2. No making big scenes about said body parts.My answer was that Jen should make a huge scene about the size of that rock on her finger and then casually say, “When’s the big day?” She didn’t go for that, and we decided that, too, would be creepy.
  3. Don’t mention parts of conversations you weren’t a part of.Even if you hear someone tell another person about their plans or fiance, it’s never wise to interject your two cents. She’s probably getting enough advice from her mom, her mother-in-law to be and every other female family member she’s ever acknowledged exists. That, and if you’ve never spoken to her before, the most significant day of her life is a deep place to jump in. It’s just a little weird and intruding.
  4. Don’t ask to be invited to event mentioned in conversation you weren’t a part of.I think this one is self-explanatory. If you don’t know the person well enough to strike up a conversation about wedding plans in class, you definitely don’t know them well enough to ask for an invite. Even if she feels to awkward to say no and you manage to score an invite, she’s going to be totally freaked out and probably drop the class. Keep in mind, she may have given you a false date and location.
  5. If you are a wedding vendor or planner do not hand a business card to someone you assume is engaged just because there is a ring on the all important finger.No one likes a used car salesman. No one likes a nosy neighbor. If you start a conversation with, “I’m a florist and I’d love to do your bouquets,” you’ve just become both. Besides, if you start out normal you may be more likely to get that invite and the business. It’s important to keep the initial creepiness to a minimal.
  6. After asking “When’s the wedding” don’t automatically ask “and the honeymoon?”First, we’ve already established that you don’t know this person. Not even a little bit. She may be OK with you asking about wedding related things once you get a conversation going, but when you immediately jump in with the honeymoon it can be slightly awkward. She may want to tell all her friends that they’re going to New Zealand to do a Lord of the Rings tour, but she doesn’t know you. It’s really none of your business and you’ll most definitely get a weird look.
  7. Don’t ask if she’ll be wearing white to the wedding.I think this has some pretty clear implications. Just don’t.
  8. If the engagement was a short one, don’t ask, “Oh, is there a reason you had to get married so quickly?”Again with the implications. You especially want to note this one if you’re a vendor hoping to get some business. A more appropriate response would be, “That’s great! There’s no reason for a long engagement when you know he’s the one!” Sure it’s cheesy, but who doesn’t want a slightly romantic wedding planner? If she drops the bomb that there is a reason for the rush, #7 still applies.
  9. Don’t start a conversation based on your catching a glance of a website the person next to or in front of you is browsing. Maybe it’s just a Hayes family thing, but we tend to poke our nose into other people’s business. We’re just a curious bunch. Jen saw over a girl’s shoulder that she was looking at wedding dresses. If you do it too, it is best kept to yourself. “I think you should go with the empire waist; it will be much more flattering on your figure,” is not a good icebreaker. Then you’re way creepy because you’ve obviously been staring at her and her computer. You’ve just blown any chance of catering her wedding.
  10. Don’t chat about blog ideas that make you laugh or cry while sitting in a college class – especially when the professor is talking about fatalities in war.

Poor Jen. We’ve decided her professor and possibly the people immediately surrounding her in her World War 1 class think she’s a nut job. If anyone were to ever approach the subject with her she has 2 great excuses. She could either play the, I’m pregnant card or just tell them that she’s been brainstorming with her little sister about self-help blogs. Either one would explain the strange faces that she makes trying to stifle laughter. And the please-don’t-make-me-write-another-paper tears.

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Let’s try this again…

It’s been a while. I believe I’m ready to return to the blogging community. I’m starting fresh. Hopefully this will be a long-term commitment rather than a summer camp romance. I have some thoughts to put down. When they’re clear and ready to post I’ll begin a new venture in blogging.

Until then,

Ashley

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