Meridian Star

July 5, 2013

Christmas in July

By Annie McKee
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN — How many times have you heard the little ditty, Christmas in July? It does conjure up some type of excitement, doesn’t it? But just what, when, and where?

         Let us take a closer look. Hmm, maybe it’s some kind of warning that as of June 25, Christmas is only six months away – hard to believe, isn’t it? Or perhaps it triggers some type of worldwide signal – a signal that says, “Let the spending begin!” That would be more probable, I think.

         The words, Christmas in July, to me, seems an oxymoron — either it’s Christmas or either it’s July. Can’t be both, or can it? Oh, too deep for me — just give me Christmas at Christmas time and July in the sticky, hot heat of a Mississippi summer. Let’s don’t take something easy and make it hard!

         And yet, we Americans enjoy an intrigue — a little pull to our string. So let us just contemplate a Christmas that is really in July. Put on your thinking cap and take off your jacket and gloves. We won’t need them in the heat of Christmas!   

    It’s time to start the Christmas cooking, right here in the middle of our fresh garden season, and that’s a good thing! We’ll have vine fresh, lush ripe tomatoes.  Hey, and we’ll pull some sweet and pure white corn … the stalks are hanging with plenty for everyone. And to add to this bounty are squashes by the bucket full and enough fresh-fried okra for the entire neighborhood.

    This is fun!!

    Decorating for Christmas, July-style, can be a challenge, I think. Why, I can “work-up-a-sweat” stringing festive lights all around the house in the cold frosty air of December. I suppose, in order to be cooler, I could wear my bathing suit, but then, another problem presents itself (or rather sags itself). Oh me, I won’t even go there!

         Christmas caroling will be moved inside, with the A/C blasting, instead of a walk around the neighborhood, and for refreshments, there would be lemonade and home cranked-ice cream, instead of cider and fruitcake, or maybe, both! Now, that might work!

         Christmas traveling, with the warm weather and all, will include little outings to Okatibbee Beach or Bonita Lakes Park, plus, maybe a boating expedition to the Tombigbee River — our eastern Alabama neighbors. Don’t forget the sunscreen and bug spray because those mosquitoes will be in full force, not to mention the sugar ants sniffing our Christmas-time picnic lunches.

         And the Christmas pageants, outside nativity plays, and making certain all of the little angels, shepherds, and wise men prepare to dress more in the mode of a heated climate. Can you see the shepherds in Speedo? No more Dad’s big, heavy bath robes or Mom’s rendition of angel wings made from fleece and quilting, just too hot for that.

    Yes, Christmas in July — I didn’t realize this transition could be so difficult! I admit, I am a creature of habit, and I love a rut.

         And after all Christmas will never be in July, never! Not as long as the Good Book teaches that our Lord and Savior was born on December 25, can we, mere mortals, take an important date such as Christmas and slide it around to suit our own ideas.

    And who thought of Christmas in July anyway? Must have been someone who had a whole lot of time on their hands, just a-thinking up a big-ole-complicated “what if!”

    I say there’s plenty of stuff to keep July busy. Yes, starting with The Fourth, of course, then tack on The Choctaw Indian Fair and The Neshoba County Fair, plus all of the getting- ready-for-school to start!

         Whew! Now aren’t you glad you don’t have to throw in Christmas shopping, cooking, decorating and a thousand-other-Christmas-time-activities on your July calendar?

         I have just marked Christmas in July off of my to-do-list, and I say, “Hallelujah to the Highest and Amen!!

         Hope your 4th was the best!