Happy Elfing Holidays! OR: The 3 Best Ways to Celebrate the Holidays
Ahh, the holidays. That wonderful time of year when black ice nearly sends your car careening into a tree (#personalexperience #ithappenedyesterday), when Mother Nature dips below zero and tries to freeze your face off, and when so many of your coworkers take the week off that you’re no longer sure if you work in a corporate office or an abandoned warehouse.
When I lived in Spain, I loved coming home for the holidays. Being back in Minnesota (and not needing to “come back”) has a little bit of a different vibe to it.
Lord knows it’s been a challenging experience to go from “abroad life” to “corporate life.” But it certainly has its advantages. In fact, it’s led me to the 3 best ways to celebrate the holidays:
1. The Frozen Dodgeball Tournament
My company created a “frozen dodgeball” tournament for its employees. Think dodgeball but with soft white balls.
Employees who wanted to participate organized themselves into teams and many wore matching holiday sweaters or other costumes.
As much fun as it was to sip hot cider from the sidelines and watch grown adults duck and roll behind fake trees while simultaneously trying to pelt each other with fluffy dodgeballs, I would have to say that my favorite part of the entire experience was reading the team names on the scoreboard.
Some of the teams were really freaking creative!
These are my top favorites, with #1 being the best and most creative. See if you agree with my list:
5. Winter is Coming
4. Make Dodgeball Great Again
3. Jingle Ballers
2. Girl Scout Drop Outs
…and the winner is…wait for it…drum roll please…
1. The Dodge Fathers
2. Don’t be a Cotton-Headed Ninny Muggins
Ok, you’re going to hate me for this one, so prepare for a quick, swift stab of jealousy. I’ll make it quick and painless, I promise.
As part of our holiday festivities, my company played “Elf” in our massive movie theater and invited employees to “watch and work.”
Which means I literally got paid to watch a movie at work. WHAT.
See, I told you that you would hate me.
And since we have daycare at the company, many employees brought their kids into the theater and were able to watch it together. Which was super cute.
Oh, AND we had candy and goodies. Yum.
And gawd daaaaaaamn, I forgot what a good movie “Elf” is!
“Buddy the Elf, what’s your favorite color?”
“I’m just a cotton headed ninny muggins (*gasp!*).”
“SANTA! I KNOW HIM!!!”
“Oooh, he’s an angry elf.”
“I just like to smile. Smiling’s my favorite.”
Totally a modern classic.
3. Jesus Will Understand
I spent Christmas at my mother’s house in my hometown with my mother, brother, sister-in-law, and two nephews.
Nolan and Brayden were just born when I left for Spain. Sometimes, it feels like my life abroad happened so fast that no time passed at all. But then I see the two of them and I’m faced with the truth – they are clearly 2 year-olds now!
And they brought the joy, love…and noise…that only two 2 year-olds could bring to a household. 😉
It was super fun playing with them and watching them unwrap presents (admittedly, they were more interested in the wrapping paper than the actual presents, but hey, that’s how these things go).
Eventually, they left and it was just me and my mom.
And we were animals, let me tell you. Raging, partying, making so much noise that the neighbors called the cops.
We lounged around in our pajamas all day, until it was time to go to church.
And then we drove through the cold, packed ourselves in with the rest of the holy-for-one-day masses, and watched the priest through the TV monitor at the back of the church.
Oh joy. Oh rapture.
Don’t tell Jesus this, but we were only at church for about 45 minutes.
Usually, mass lasts for an hour, but I could tell this one was going into overtime.
I knew the priest had at least another 30 minutes in him.
I could feel it in my bones.
I told my mother that all I wanted for Christmas was Papa Murphy’s pizza, which was closing at 5pm…the exact time that mass would end.
And despite my mother’s complaints and rosary-clutching, I managed to convince her to sneak out the back door and escape.
We ran through the the church parking lot to our car (really, when it’s this cold, you just get in the habit of running from door to door) and my mother yelled at me about how this was a bad idea and what bad Christians we were.
I yelled, “Jesus will understand!”
We made it to the pizza shop just in the nick of time, went back to the house, got back in our pajamas, and ate pizza while watching Christmas Hallmark movies.
Ahhh, Christmas Hallmark movies. Every woman’s guilty pleasure.
The predictable, cheesy, romantic plot lines that we manage to both love and love to hate:
- A girl slips on a patch of ice and a man catches her. They fall in love, but he hasn’t told her about his secret identity as a famous author. Can their love survive such a terrible betrayal?
- An amnesia patient falls in love with his beautiful yet down-to-earth nurse, only to regain his memory and realize he’s actually a Swedish prince. Can they stay together when their worlds are so very far apart?
- A woman who writes greeting cards and believes in love and the holiday spirit is horrified to discover that her beloved company is being taken over by a handsome but cynical Scrooge. Will she be able to touch his heart and teach him to love again?
I’m a total sucker for this stuff, especially around the holidays.
Although, just once, I would love to hear a Hallmark character say, “Let’s get drunk and make bad decisions.”
Please, just once.
Around my second slice of pizza, third glass of moscato, and fourth Christmas Hallmark movie, I turned to my mom.
“This has been my favorite day of the year,” I said.
I hope this blog post made you smile. If you want more smiles and laughter in your life, consider subscribing by clicking “Laugh More” on the right (or down below if you’re on mobile).
Happy holidays and happy new year!
May 2018 bring you all the joy, laughter, and love that you deserve – and more!