Book Review of "Loving My Actual Christmas" www.theshortesttallman.com

Book Review: Loving My Actual Christmas

Well, good day to you fine folks 🙂 I am so appreciative that you have taken the time out from your day to check out my widdle blog.

Today, I’d like to share with you a little somethin’ somethin’ about a new book that I had the pleasure of reading and helping to promote, Loving My Actual Christmas: An Experiment in Relishing the Season by Alexandra Kuykendall. She was the author of another book I loved, Loving My Actual Life: An Experiment in Relishing What’s Right in Front of Me. See my review of Loving My Actual Life here.

CHRISTMAS?!!?! Not yet, please!!! Are we really going there?

Oh, yes. We are. So fasten your jingle bells and let’s go!

Book Review of "Loving My Actual Christmas" www.theshortesttallman.comSo of course, we all know that with the joy of the Christmas season also comes the struggles. I mean, one of the most played songs during the season is that “The 12 Things At Christmas That Are Such a Pain to Me”! Everybody is trying to take a piece of you: your family, your job, volunteer and charitable opportunities, friends’ parties, … and I haven’t even gotten to the church part yet. You know, the whole reason it even exists. I think that the biggest thing that makes encourages all these struggles is the flood of output by the media: commercials, paper ads, social media; it’s coming from all sides! And that leads to us creating the worst handmade craft of them all: expectations.

Really, the cause of stress of the Christmas season all comes from not meeting our expectations.

This is what Kuykendall tries to help the reader with: enjoying your actual Christmas. Not the one from the picture perfect advertisements that come in the paper during Thanksgiving week. In this book, you’ll find the author document her own experiment of trying to keep a positive attitude, let go of expectations, and feel contentment throughout the season. Like in Loving My Actual Life, she tries various strategies and explains what worked and what didn’t, as well as new discoveries.

You’ll find both practical and inspirational ideas in here. In the first part of the book, she outlines each week of Advent and focuses on improving one area of it, then she writes about every day of that week and how it went. I love the realness of her writing. She’s not a picture of perfection, but she is trying, which I think is where many of us are. Then in the second half of the book, she gives you wonderful practical tips for minimizing the stress, “Making Your Actual Christmas Work.” I love that title!

I would recommend this book to any mom who is finding themselves getting lost in the stresses of the season more than they’d like to admit. Maybe you’re hanging in there pretty well but you could use a little more joy and focus on the real reason for the season- this book is for you, too! I’m glad I read it, and I think it’s going to help me stay grounded, stay present, and stay in a positive place this season. Because I think even for the calm and put-together of us, Christmas is one heck of a firecracker.


I was given a electronic copy of this book in exchange for this review, but as always, I speaketh the truth as I see it. 🙂


It’s that time of year when we’re slowly starting to thinking about the year unwinding. What things tend to stress you out during the most wonderful time of the year?

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