I have to learn to relax at this time of year. I want everything to be perfect. Well, guess what? It never is. My house will never be perfectly clean, perfectly decorated or perfectly laid out. Things will be old, worn, or mismatched. My food will never be perfect. I will never be perfect.
The thing I have to remember is that the people who are coming to our home aren't coming for the cleanliness, the decorations or even the food. They're coming to spend some time with the people who live here. To share some conversation and maybe make a little memory.
It's easy to get bent out of shape over things that won't matter in two days. Or two months at the most.
I learned about allowing myself to be less than perfect through writing. I don't know of any writer—famous, infamous or unknown—who comes out with the perfect manuscript the first time around. Anne Lamott blessed me with this knowledge.
So, I gave myself permission to be imperfect this year. It won't be easy, but I'll try.
CR: House Rules by Jodi Picoult.
It's all better with friends.