My favorite part of the season is watching all of the old
cartoons, especially my two favorites: "A Charlie Brown Christmas"
and "How The Grinch Stole Christmas." I appreciate how the
narration of these good old-fashioned cartoons instills wisdom
beyond our children's imagination, planting seeds of kindness,
thoughtfulness and gratefulness.
Each year I get a little more nostalgic wanting to preserve the
meaning of Christmas for my children and while I was reading A
Charlie Brown Christmas to my son this evening, I thought to
myself, I can totally relate.
As Charlie Brown opens up to his BFF Linus about not being
happy, Linus encourages him to forget his problems like the rest of
the kids are doing. Charlie Brown then goes to Lucy who tells
"Look, Charlie Brown, let's face it. We all know that Christmas
is a big commercial racket. It's run by a big Eastern Syndicate,
When did Christmas become some big commercial racket that
somehow big retailers have us thinking we need this and that and
our kids think they need this and that? It becomes an ungrateful
cycle, don't you think?
I am so grateful I live in a condo. I have asked politely that
people not to give the kids toys because we don't have room. But I
know it is my job as a parent to show my kids the meaning of
Christmas and it is my responsibility to show them how to be
gracious and humble for what we have and what we receive in life.
In fact, I'll keep Netflix on just to avoid those pesky marketing
But Linus, good ole Linus, does a beautiful job in explaining to
Charlie Brown the true meaning of Christmas when he cites Luke
Chapter 2 that even non-believers can feel their hearts getting
warm and fuzzy.
Then, as I watched the Grinch's heart grow three times its size
on Saturday night with my kids, I listened closely to my favorite
line (a line I used in Christmas cards when my daughter was 2):
"He puzzled and puzzled till his puzzler was sore. Then the
Grinch thought of something he hadn't before! Maybe Christmas, he
thought, doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps, means
a little bit more!"
The moral of the story was Whoville didn't need things to still
celebrate Christmas. When the Grinch heard those cheerful songs, he
realized the holiday was about being together, sharing, loving,
spreading kindness and being grateful for what we have in our
Our lives do not become full because we get what we want, but we
must learn to give more than what we have. That is how
commercialism robs us of living a full and rich life. It's a lesson
the Grinch had to learn all by himself.
Yes, I buy presents for my kids, but we don't buy them
everything they want -- there are lessons to be learned in not
getting everything we want in life. Tomorrow we will start
reading the story of baby Jesus daily, working our way up to
Christmas day. And my kids will have fun opening the presents,
eating cookies, watching movies and hanging out our jammies,
because hanging out and tuning out is what we will be doing on
But Linus is right! "I won't let all of this commercialism spoil
my Christmas" because Christmas means so much more!
Jasmine blogs to inspire you to make positive, healthy changes.
See more of Jasmine's stories here.
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