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The Bitter Lemon

By Holly A. Phillips — @OrangeJulius7

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… or is it? The holidays are often associated with cheer, get-togethers, and gifts, but for singletons, the holidays can be a lonely reminder of what we’re missing.

Blame it on the chilly weather or the party invitations, but it often seems like the holidays are made for couples. And hey, good for the couples. But where does that leave the rest of us? Out in the cold, hanging with Frosty?

If there’s vodka and candy canes, it actually doesn’t sound half-bad.

Think about it: there’s Thanksgiving, followed by Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year’s. If that midnight kiss doesn’t send you over the edge, don’t worry, Valentine’s Day is right around the corner.

But these next few weeks don’t have to be couples-only – it’s time we take December by the reins. Move over, Santa!

My very first boyfriend and I broke up right before Christmas (many years ago), so I returned his gift and bought myself some nice makeup instead.

Side note: his last name was Garland, and I used to wonder what it’d be like if we got married (Holly Garland).

Anyway, this started a personal tradition: spoil yourself a little this time of year. When you’re out shopping for everyone else, pickup a little something for yourself.

I’d be lying if I said I didn’t purchase a few gifts for myself each year, wrap them, and write “From John Mayer” on the tag (excuse me while I hide now).

A few years ago, I suffered from a much more devastating breakup in November. I was not in the mood for Christmas cheer.

But instead of pouting, I told myself I would say “yes” to every holiday event I was invited to. In return, I went to several parties, a brunch, and baked dozens of cookies. I was too busy to be sad, plus I met new people and had fun.

It was also the same year I discovered alcoholic whipped cream. Put that in your cocoa and let me know how it turns out for you.

If nothing else, think of it this way: you’ve only got to buy gifts for family and friends. No need to stress over finding the perfect gift for that special someone. And to top it off, no judgment from a significant other when you get too drunk on New Year’s Eve.

One tradition I always look forward to is baking on Christmas Eve. It’s something I started doing several years ago as a way to get into the spirit; plus, it looks like I’ve really got it together when I show up to the next gathering with a festive, homemade something.

It also doesn’t hurt if you want to eat the entire thing yourself — no one around to witness it, yet another perk of the single life.

So, cheers to being single this holiday season. May you have an electric blanket for warmth, a stocking big enough for Santa’s visit (or John Mayer, in my case), and one of those wine glasses big enough for an entire bottle.

Read more about flirting with Frosty on Holly’s blog, TheBitterLemon.com.

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