Take a Hallmark moment: How I'll wind down before Christmas chaos

My stocking is hung with care so I can watch endless Hallmark movies all weekend. 

It's a few nights of sleep till the jolly old elf himself, Santa Claus, brings good little boys and girls the toys they've been wishing for all year. 

My days of hoping for Santa's gifts have passed. I'm adulting appropriately, I guess. My hands are rough and calloused from wrapping presents and hanging greenery in every nook and cranny in my small mill village house. I'm worried that my coworkers will hate their homemade gifts so much they'll egg my car. Still, I am excited about the possibility this weekend brings.

All my stocking-stuffer items are purchased. All the gifts will be wrapped. I'm out of Christmas cards, so no more can be sent. The 13-foot tree in my front yard cannot physically be decorated anymore because my arms are sore and the grilling fork I was using to place ornaments on the higher branches has been misplaced, so that means I can finally break out the Christmas pajamas, make up some fresh cookie dough and begin an almost endless marathon of Hallmark movies.

Most gals watch them because each movie is just so comforting, but for me it's so that I subconsciously guess what's going to happen. It's not that tough.

"Will the college professor find out she's dating the Prince of Astonia?" "Will the blind man find love with the woman who writes Christmas songs in braille?" "Will the child whose dad recently passed away be able to raise enough money to buy his mom the pots and pan set she's wanted all year?"

Most of the time my guesses aren't' exactly spot on. I've always had an overactive imagination that leans toward psychosis at times, so my guessing goes along these lines "She'll  definitely find out he's the Prince of Astonia and then she'll have to admit she's a spy trying to steal secrets from the Astonian government." 

"The blind man is surely going to fall in love with his music teacher and then tell her she's been writing her songs all wrong." 

"That little boy will totally raise the money for his mom's pots and pan set, but then he'll have to fight a neighborhood kid in Walmart for the set that his mom wants."

Even with bad guessing, I'll be content with lounging on the couch and only focusing on the TV screen. I'm not one to condone endless boob-tube watching, but if you're as stressed as I am about the holidays and making them perfect for loved ones, you should probably find an outlet for all that anxiety. Try watching a Hallmark movie. Bake some cookies and don't worry about the butter or calories you'll consume. Take time to enjoy the lights on your tree, the smell of the pine air freshener you have plugged into the wall and the sight of your kiddos excitedly talking about Santa. 

Life's too short to not enjoy the small, sometimes slightly shallow-plotted things like Astonian princes and TV holiday miracles.


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