Christmas in July

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True confession: I’ve watched more than one Hallmark Christmas movie this past week. I never knew they had a Christmas in July movie extravaganza! The movies are classic, fairy-tale love stories with an extra twist of holiday spirit, and I’m quite embarrassed that I got sucked into the drama. But I did…. and it was kind of nice to live in a fairy-tale for a short time.

How did they come up with this theme “Christmas in July?” Turns out Hallmarks been doing it for many years and it introduces their new Christmas ornaments at the same time. Some folks think it started with those who live in the Southern Hemisphere so they could enjoy the holiday during a cooler part of the year. But it seems like Christmas in July is more about merchandise than making merriment.

History records American retailers in the 1880s advertising Christmas products for sale in July. Even then, people complained about greed and the commercialism of Christmas but most likely people knew that you had to plan ahead if you were relying on the ground delivery by horse and wagon, instead of FedEx.

The town of West Jefferson, North Carolina celebrates Christmas in July every year. It’s kind of like The Street Fair on steroids. And wouldn’t you know it…. this little town is in the largest Christmas Tree producing county in the nation!

Before you get fed up with having the Christmas season starting in full summer swing, I’m wondering if you’ve ever heard of The Four Things. Instead of endless packages under the tree, each person gets something they want, and something they need; something to wear and something to read.

This is a tradition that I’m instituting with my son. He might not be as excited as I am since he “needs a lot of things that he wants.”

If I was celebrating Christmas in July, this would be my list:

Want: Art supplies. I’ve been playing around with my mom and her artist friend Sandy Miles doing alcohol inks. You use special paper and a liquid solution and the inks swirl around the paper. You don’t have complete control of the creation and it’s fun to watch what develops.

Need:  It’s nice to reach a place in life where I can’t think of anything I really need… ok, maybe a personal chef would be nice, but really, I’m quite content. Maybe I’ll get some Power Plate meals or order SunBasket, a meal prep delivery company that uses all organic foods.

Wear:  Sunproof clothing. Even though I work with skin every day, and have taken many skin cancers off my patients, I never seem to get enough sunscreen on my chest. I buy sunproof swim-shirts for my son, and I think I need to invest in a few cool but protective tops for the lake.

Read: I am a book fiend and seem to have an Amazon book order almost every day. For many years, I’ve only read books about medicine, skin care, parenting, and business.  Lately, I’ve delved back into fiction. I enjoyed The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes. But I’ve been thinking I should save a few trees. I found a cool site called BookBub that sends out daily notices for discounted Kindle books. I’ve made some great purchases for 99 cents to $2.99. For car trips, we now do audio books instead of videos. We listened to WONDER back and forth from Omaha and can’t wait for Julia Roberts in the upcoming movie.

And no matter what time of year, you can always rejoice in the reason for the season.

Good will to all!


Dr Sue

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