A holiday reminder from Scout Finch

I had forgotten about the Christmas story in Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird until recently when I listened to the audio book.

Scout is pleased when she and Jim receive air rifles for Christmas, but not very happy about having Christmas dinner with Aunt Alexandra.

“Aunt Alexandra was fanatical on the subject of my attire,” Scout reports. “I could not possibly hope to be a lady if I wore breeches; when I said I could do nothing in a dress, she said I wasn’t supposed to be doing things that required pants.”

However, Scout adds: “But her cooking made up for everything: three kinds of meat, summer vegetables from her pantry shelves, peach pickles, two kinds of cake and ambrosia constituted a modest Christmas dinner.”

What’s the reminder? I’ve been thinking that, sometimes when I stuff myself with all the good food that appears during the holiday season, I’m trying to create the perfect holiday—or to compensate when my too high expectations for the perfect holiday don’t match with my real life, imperfect holiday.

This holiday season, I’m going to remember to think about why I’m stuffing myself.


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