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mindyourmind Monday: Holidays

We’re back again with mindyourmind Mondays! Every few weeks, we’ve been highlighting something that we're talking about here at mindyourmind. Since this is our last mindyourmind Monday blog of the year, we thought it would be fitting to have a discussion about the holidays! I asked the team these questions:

What is one aspect of the holidays that you will miss this season? On the same note, what are you looking forward to?

Here were our responses:

Elora: This year I will miss feeling a sense of community, something that I find often occurs during the holiday season. I will miss taking part in festivities with ease and without fear and connecting with others, like extended family, friends, and even strangers. 

With that being said, I’m looking forward to spending time with close family, by watching our favourite Christmas movies, building gingerbread houses, baking other festive treats, and singing along to Christmas music. 

Justin: I have a large extended family - my mom has seven siblings, and between those aunts and uncles, I have thirteen cousins (I may be forgetting some) - most of whom live in the GTA or come back for the holidays. The family keeps getting bigger too, with the addition of new partners and new babies. Growing up, we would gather at someone's home for dinner on Christmas Day; in recent years, as our group grew more unwieldy to house and feed, we've gone to a restaurant and then to a cousin's house afterwards. I'm going to miss the warmth of our huge family gathering this year.

However, I feel very fortunate to have been sheltering at home with my immediate family for the past month, so I can spend the holidays with them, and I'm sure we'll organize a virtual get-together to see all our relatives too.

Michelle: 2020 has been quite a year. I didn't think we'd be in the Red zone in December! I'm missing so many things about this holiday season but the biggest is our family dinner. Everyone brings a side dish and dessert to my mother's place, we play games around the table and laugh a lot. On the same note I'm looking forward to seeing them over Zoom. We are planning on playing virtual games and showing off our decorations in our own homes. Can't wait to say goodbye to 2020 and I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year!

Carolyn: This holiday season I was really looking forward to seeing friends and having our festive gatherings in usual fashion, even though I tend to get drained by these same gatherings, I am going to miss being able to have some fun with people. What I am looking forward to is having a low key holiday and getting some time to reflect on my goals for the new year. 

Heather: I'm going to miss our large extended family gatherings that lasted all day, involved lots of food, and a fun, gift-stealing game with everyone. I’m also going to miss our annual Christmas get-togethers with friends, sharing food and laughs. 

I'm looking forward to some down time and slower paced days to spend with my daughter doing puzzles and baking cookies!  We’ll be taking evening walks around the neighbourhood to see the festive lights and inflatable Santas!  Happy Holidays everyone. 

Kyle: This season I’m probably going to miss live events the most, particularly the New Years Eve concert and fireworks. There might be some events still going on but I find the half-hearted, socially distanced versions of these things to be more depressing than if they just cancelled them outright.

On the other hand, this year I’m looking forward to trying out the Icelandic tradition of “Jolabokaflod” (the Christmas Book Flood) - gifting books on Christmas Eve and spending the night curled up with coffee / hot chocolate and reading.

Scarlett: I will miss getting together with my extended family — especially my late mom's side, because they live further away and I don't get to see them as much (and I always treasure being able to feel connected to her through them). 

Since I'm the sole occupant of my household, I believe I'm permitted to visit another household so I will be playing it by ear to see whether I visit my family homestead or not. If I do, this could mean getting to see my nieces and nephews, even if it's with masks or from a distance. If that does end up being the case, that's certainly something to look forward to as those kiddos are like sunshine for me. 

As for me? Like so many others, I’m going to miss the boisterous family gatherings! I have a massive family, and I usually love the holidays because I get to see my aunts, uncles, cousins, and the babies who seem less like babies every year. Since I’ve been away at school for the past four years, the holidays are also sometimes my only chance to see some of my family members. 

Nevertheless, I’m thankful for some of the holiday traditions we have with my immediate family, because we’ll be able to keep those alive this year. 2020’s been quite the year, and even just having something to celebrate makes me happy!

We hope your holiday season is safe and joyous as well. Happy holidays!

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