Self on the Shelf

I can do it. I can be like Elf on the Shelf. I can be Self on the Shelf.

I can BE STILL. (I first typed ‘Sit Still’ but, boy-o-boy! Did that conjure up some memories! Somehow Dad trying to ensure I did meant we created a much bigger ruckus than had I been allowed to wiggle, but I digress). We all need quiet time to relax, ponder, observe, to cue in to others’ joys and needs as well as our own. We might be more inclined to consider quiet time this Christmas 2020 with pandemic restrictions ‘helping’ us reduce the harrowing hustle and bustle that sometimes masks the reason for this season in ‘normal’ circumstances. Elf is observant.

I can CREATE. (That motivates me more than ‘Make Do’ does, which focuses on lack rather than gratitude). Integrate favorite traditions in new ways. Move the tree. Have a second one. Is it still a thing to hang one upside down? Add candlelight. Carol from room to room or share with loved ones your voices on facebook live or audio texts. Send store-bought or homemade cards the ‘old-fashioned’ way; share personalized messages in each. Use precious ornaments, cards and mementos to decorate in alternative styles. Let the kids design placemats or holiday pictures for the fridge. Find ways for all to help. Just create less havoc than Elf.

I can SHARE. (Technically the Elf is doing that when he ‘Tattles’ to Santa, right)? We can share the reason we celebrate this holy time along with the ways we celebrate. We can share our ears and our time, giving others missing friends and loved ones the opportunity to share their traditions and memories. Share cookies and stories, smiles and recipes. Share the story from the second chapter of Luke. Share joy. Remember, the Elf fits into each family in different ways, but he always shares fun.

I can LOVE. It transcends the woes of this coronavirus, helps us celebrate through our sorrows, gives us hope and promise. It’s a verb, too. Requires action – both giving and receiving. I wish you love and joy this season no matter how you celebrate it. Merry Christmas!

About Teresa Pearson Lee

Retired after 33 years of teaching English and French (one year in private school in Memphis, TN and the rest in public school in Doniphan, MO. Enjoying new adventures - all those things I put off for lack of time, energy, now I can try them! Pottery, writing, traveling, camping, kayaking, dancing, listening to some of the best live music ever, and making lively new friendships. All christened with an appreciation for great red wine! Created and operated KC's on the Current, then sold it and managed it for new owners. You might still find me at the reservation desk when spring rolls around. Born and raised in St. Louis, MO near The Hill. Though a transplant to Southeast Missouri, still a city gal at the core with a deep love of the natural resources in these Ozark foothills. Currently I am a content coordinator for Poplar Bluff Living Magazine and a columnist/stringer for the local weekly The Prospect News. My rescue Siamese helps with most of the proofreading; he has a great ear. I relish the solitude easily had in the Mark Twain Forest but thoroughly enjoy lively outings for music, wine, conversation close to home or in my beloved hometown. Technology is my greatest challenge but so worth the shared connections. There may be a need for solitude but there is little loneliness. The material in this blog written by Teresa Lee is her property and cannot be used without express written consent to do so.
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