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Oh, We Won't Give In

Monday, December 10, 2012

I think it's really, really easy, to just hang it all up this time of year.

It's dark. There are parties. Your routine is interrupted. People are shoving food at you. It's the holidays! The treats are limited edition. Emotions are amped up. Family is everywhere. Stress levels are through the roof.

It's just a piece of pie.

It's just a cocktail.

It's just a big ole holiday turkey.

It's just eggnog.

It's just potato latkes.

It's just a candy cane.

It's just sufganiyot.

It's just Christmas cookies.

It's just Chanukah gelt.

It's just it's just it's just it's just.

Ai yi yi, what are ya doin' to yourself??!?!?!?

No wonder January is a prime time for starting diets. It's not just that it's the start of a brand-new, fresh year. It's not just that it's the start of a quarter. It's that you're safely past the big ole skeery holidays.

Well, I got news for ya.

That Chanukah gelt?

They'll sell it next year. It's not even that tasty (it's kinda cheap milk chocolate).

That turkey?

You had it at Thanksgiving. And you can have it again in a week or a month. See, they sell turkey all year long. Shocking, eh?

Those potato latkes?

You can make 'em healthier by draining the hell out of 'em.

Those sufganiyot?

They're doughnuts! You can get something rather similar to 'em at Dunkin or Tim Horton's or Honey Dew or wherever ALL YEAR LONG.

This is not the be-all, end-all. You are not putting on layers of fat for the winter (don't you own any sweaters? Cripes, this time of year, doesn't everybody wear their really ugly Bill Cosby-inspired ones anyway?). You are not coming to the very end, where you are never, ever, ever, ever, ever going to have eggnog again.

Now, I love most of the aforementioned stuff. And I can get caught up in the lie that it is oh so special.

It's not.

But yanno what is?

Being together is.

This year, my folks are coming. And then in early January, I am going to them twice (my husband is coming with me the second time), as my mother is turning 80. I will see cousins I have not seen in quite a while (although I do see them on Facebook every day).

This is what is special. This interacting. These hugs. These smiles. These images, whether recorded by our cameras or our memories or both. THAT is what is special.

The rest of it is calories.
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    It's not going anywhere...the food that is. What a concept!

    Great blog, JES.
    2721 days ago
    Happy holidays!
    2726 days ago
    Happy holidays!
    2728 days ago
  • PICKIE98
    SO true!! The last year I had everybody at my home, I had so much food. THEY all loved it because, of course, they are all bean poles, ,,,like 6'6 180 pounds!! Yup!! They eat like the stores will close tomorrow, too!!
    One thing I did for myself was to put ALL OF THE FOOD IN THE BASEMENT. I have a very small home, but ten steps to go down to get that food made for lots of leftovers!

    2729 days ago

    Comment edited on: 12/10/2012 5:01:21 PM
    I don't know what most of those things are but I definitely agree with the principle! If my Grandma is still around at Christmas I'm going to focus on spending time with her. SO much more important than food.
    2729 days ago
    2729 days ago
    (Says the girl who jumped all over herself to order potato latkes when she found out they had them at the deli on Saturday. Mmm, potato latkes...)

    Seriously, though, you're right. It's not about the damn latkes or cookies or cornbread stuffing. And while it's true that holiday celebrations are undeniably food-centric, just sitting at the table shouldn't mean you'll automatically have second, thirds or fourths.

    (And even if it does, you're only really screwed if you don't bounce back. Bounce freaking back, people! If you say yes to more than you should this month, just accept that the weeks that follow will require you to work harder in the gym and/or cut back a little more than usual.)

    So, hug your grandma, put up with your crazy MIL, enjoy the singularly unique wackiness of your particular and even dysfunctional families -- because you're right -- that is what's special about the holidays!
    2729 days ago
    "You don't have to eat the whole thing." That is my mantra. I agree, focus on socializing not on food. Eat the heavy, rich foods in moderation. Save your appetite for a home made treat rather than the Entenmanns cake that just came out of a box. It's the holidays. Make it special!
    2729 days ago
    So true! Happy Hannukah!
    2729 days ago
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