The Star-Herald

Holiday hodgepodge

As much as I cringe at the idea of impending colder weather, now that it’s kind of here I’m starting to have visions of cornucopias and evergreens. It’s nearly time to look forward to decorating and baking, twinkling lights and gatherings.  

Oh, but wait — Christmas started in September.  Or was that Halloween? No, that started in August.  It’s November — there’s still Halloween candy, but Christmas trees are appearing.  What happened to Thanksgiving? 

Confused?  Me too.  

Go into any store and you’ll understand.  They’re selling barbecue gear and costumes, sandals and Santa Claus, and those cute little candy bars are wrapped in so many colors … should you eat the regular ones, the harvest-colored ones or the red and green ones first?

A coworker described the now five-month season until the new year as “HalloThanksMas,” which I thought was genius. Only now, we’re celebrating ThanksMas. Or are we? Where did Thanksgiving go?

Now I absolutely love the holidays. Anybody who knows me will attest to that; there have been a few eye rolls when I start humming holiday tunes and get out my jingle-bell pen. Even my office is awash in seasonal colors. Right now it’s burgundies and golds, and in a few weeks it’ll be deep green and red.  

But I must confess, this whole throw-all-the-holidays-in-together idea is downright disturbing. We have such beautiful autumns in The County; this year was no exception. Why rush things? 

But stores are filled with tree displays and decor, toys and baking goods. You even hear seasonal music now on the radio and while shopping. 

These are all good things — but hold the phone.

Let’s not forget Thanksgiving, which for many marks the last of fall and the harvest (though it’s a bit late for harvest in our neck of the woods). Families and communities plan meals for the big day. Some look forward to the Macy’s parade or football, and others to the official start of the holiday shopping season. 

Somebody apparently kidnapped Thanksgiving. 

But wait — there has to be someone to blame, and I know who it was. 

It was the same person who invented the TurDuckKen — you know, that bird-within-a-bird-within-a-bird holiday dish. Is it turkey? Well, sort of.  Is it chicken? Kinda. And what’s that other darkish meat floating around in there?  

No wonder we’re confused, people. That culprit right there who smooshed all our dinners into one must be the one who melded all the holidays together.

I say, never mind. 

Whether this is HallowThanksMas, Chrisgiving or MasValenEaster, I’m going to hold off on the eggnog for just a bit. There are still some leaves to rake, and though snow may be in the forecast, there are nearly three weeks before turkey day. Time to enjoy the “now” before the frenzy begins. 

And dig out that snowbrush, just in case.

Paula Brewer is assistant editor for The Star-Herald, Aroostook Republican, Houlton Pioneer Times and St. John Valley Times, plus websites TheCounty.ME and She can be reached at or (207) 764-4471.

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