‘We get crazy this time of year. Absolutely crazy. If you don’t believe me, just start watching people. Watch them cram their carts full. Watch them huff as they wait in line.’

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“We get crazy this time of year. Absolutely crazy.

If you don’t believe me, just hop in your car and head to….well, head anywhere: the grocery store, the bank, Walmart, Target, Hobby Lobby and start watching people. Watch them cram their carts full. Watch them huff as they wait in line. Watch them shuffle as they move in between the pen aisle and the cereal aisle and the baby aisle.

Watch them as they make their lists, watch them as they cross off their lists.

Buying presents, buying decorations, planning vacations, going to parties, shopping for new outfits. Stressing about spending too much, stressing about not having enough, stressing about making everything magical.

Maybe a new tree will do the trick. Maybe a new car. Maybe a new house. Maybe a trip to Disney World.

Maybe if I have the best dessert. Maybe if my kids get everything they want. Maybe if I remember to move that dang elf around every night.

Maybe if my house had some shiplap. Maybe if my countertops were more like that Pinterest picture. Maybe if I had a mudroom to hide my kids’ shoes and clutter and crap. Maybe if we finally build our dream house. Maybe if we add on that extra master suite.

Maybe if we get that big bonus. Maybe if we get that fancy promotion. Maybe if we were just rich. Maybe then life would feel more magical, more like it’s supposed to, more like Candace Cameron Bure in all those Hallmark movies.

You won’t find it in any of those things. Sure, stuff makes life less stressful, but I promise it won’t make life any sweeter.

We live in a consumerist society that functions off of you and me and all of us not being quite content with what we already own, with wanting more and more and more. We live in a culture that banks on us being unsatisfied and slightly ungrateful and never fully full with our possessions and our relationships and our life, and staying steadily hungry for the biggest and the latest and the most luxurious.

But that magic you’re craving, it’s not in those big things. It’s not in those packages. It’s not in those ads, or over on Amazon, or in anything the Jones are putting out and going out and showing off all
over social media.

It’s not in the more.

The magic you’re looking for, friend, it’s in the mundane.

It’s in the moments you’re tucking your kids in the bed, and kissing them goodnight. It’s in forehead kisses and late night giggles and watching their eyes sparkle when you whisper “I love you.”

It’s in chitchats with friends on a couch filled with laundry. It’s in cards and coffee and bowls of chips and queso. It’s in girls nights and date nights and nights watching Netflix.

It’s in holding hands with the person you love most on road trips. It’s in shouting the words to “Bohemian Rhapsody” at the top of your lungs and laughing so hard tears roll down your face when your girlfriend calls you up and asks if you remember the dance you made up to that N*SYNC song.

It’s in conversations with your mom about how hard parenting can be. It’s in texts to your dad with corny jokes and questions about what an Instagram is. It’s in getting the news that your best friend is finally pregnant after years and years of trying.

It’s in watching your grandmother make the same Thanksgiving rolls she’s made every year for as long as you can remember. It’s in hugs with the cousins you haven’t seen in a while and piling all the kids in one room to watch a cartoon while the grown-ups play a card game at the kitchen table.

It’s in dances in the kitchen with your husband with your kids at your feet and listening to your spouse explain football to your sons. It’s in bath times and bubbles and your baby learning to walk. It’s in bicycles and pick-up basketball and silly family traditions.

It’s in your oldest walking through the front door from their first semester at college. It’s in snuggles and sunrises and pizza on paper plates.

It’s in hearing the scripture you needed most from your pastor. It’s in your daughter reaching up her arms for you to hold. It’s in your son scoring his first goal and looking up to find you in the stands. It’s in the glances to your partner across a crowded room when you share an inside joke that only the two of you will ever know.

It’s in having a stranger pay for your meal.
It’s in having a friend share their struggles and saying “me too.” It’s in meeting someone new and feeling when things click and knowing this relationship is the start of something good.

It’s in making mistakes and learning something new. It’s in that first kiss after a big fight. It’s in finding who you are and accepting yourself, and giving others the freedom to be themselves too. It’s in apologies and deep conversations and moving on from the past. It’s in grace and gratitude and being gracious with all God’s given you.

It’s in the every day.

It’s in the nothing special.

It’s in the nothing showy.

The magic you’re looking for, friend, well glance all around you, because it’s there. It’s just where you’d least expect. It’s in the small. It’s in the simple. It’s in the moments you pause long enough to soak up.

It’s in the mundane.”

Husband and wife smile in selfie with their two sons while they were costume glasses with big nose
Amy Weatherly

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Amy Weatherly. The article originally appeared here. Follow Amy on Twitter here. Submit your story here, and be sure to subscribe to our best love stories here.

Read more from Amy:

‘I wonder why I wasn’t invited. I wonder why I wasn’t included. I walk up to people and get that sinking feeling they were just talking about me.’

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