The Christmas Experiment

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Elizabeth Willis Barrett

I’ve been such a Grinchy Scrooge or Scroogy Grinch around Christmas time for several years–OK, for most years–that I think it’s time I did something about it.  So I am going to practice Ebenezer’s proclamation: “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.”

Every day of this brand new 2013, I resolve to do something in commemoration of Christmas.  I am calling it The Christmas Experiment.

With a little remembering from Junior High Science and some help from the Internet, I have relearned the parts of an experiment.  Here they are in relationship to my experiment.

Observation/Problem: Because I have been much too negative about Christmas and the inevitably of its coming each year has made me dread the lovely autumn months, I would like to discover what effect various planned activities performed each day for a year will have on my personal attitude about the upcoming Christmas Season of 2013.

Hypothesis: I believe that if I perform a planned task daily with Christmas in mind, that I will look forward to the celebration of 2013‘s Christmas with joy instead of agitation and the Christmas Spirit will permeate my heart and home.

Procedure: Every day of 2013 I will do something that will help prepare me for Christmas or give me a feeling of its Spirit.  These tasks might include: writing a note to someone, planning or having a gathering of friends or family, de-junking an area which will make having guests less stressful, reading a Christmas thought or story, performing a singular service, preparing for and participating in a Christmas Boutique, listening to or practicing Christmas music, getting a head start on gift buying, reading about the Savior and His life and trying to live as He would have me live.  Whatever the experience, it will be done with the purpose of “honor(ing) Christmas in my heart and try(ing) to keep it all the year.”

Results: These tasks will be recorded daily (when life’s happenings don’t interfere with my writing) on my blog entitled thechristmasexperiment.com, along with a change of attitude results.

Discussion: If anyone wants to join me in this experiment that would be wonderful.  Then you could make comments and we could get a discussion going.

Conclusion: When Christmas comes around again in twelve months (which will feel like only four months), I will be able to determine whether the results of this experiment support or reject my hypothesis.  Until then, on with honoring and keeping!

 

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9 comments on “The Christmas Experiment

  1. Jayne Mccook says:

    I feel your pain, Actually the LAST two Christmas’s have been the best ever and do you know why? I buy NO presents yep with 25 grand children even. Instead Grandma and Grandpa put their money in inviting all the kids and grandkids for 5 days together at the beach. Last year was so special we are doing it again. Not only is our Summer break being together just tops, it makes my Christmas unstressful and just enjoying the music and family get togethers 100% better.
    Christmas shopping is what ruins the Christmas spirit I think when you have so many to shop for, really who needs another present? we all have so much, Just being together and enjoying each other with good food/ retelling family stories is the best.

  2. Nancy says:

    Hopefully your experiment will be a success! Best of luck!

  3. Kami Tilby says:

    I’d love to participate in this experiment! Sounds like what I’ve always been aiming for but been unable to achieve. I like your very logical approach!!

  4. Please join me. That would make it much more do-able. I am already 5 days behind in my reporting so I’d better get with it if I want this to work.

  5. I’m enjoying your writing very much. When we see the humor in life (and in how others do life) it makes me feel more normal. If I can’t laugh at what happens then I’m in serious trouble. Christmas has always been a tough holiday for me because what happens then seems to have no bearing on remembering and being thankful for the amazingn gift of Christ. A few years ago a friend suggested I think of December 25 as Gift Giving day. It helps. Good luck with your experiment. It sounds quite intriguing. I’ll be back…Mimi

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