Holiday Haute: Count It All Joy

Boy did I love the holidays growing up. The tree, the holiday shows on television, cinnamon rolls with my mom on Christmas morning and especially my holiday dresses. Yes, plural. My mom always would go all out around the holidays when it came to dressing me up like a doll. One dress would be for photos, one for church etc. So when I was looking through old photos and came across this holiday photo of my mother and I the memories instantly flooded in.


Moments like this are bittersweet because simply put, the holidays haven’t and will never be the same now that she is gone. In fact November to January is a time I have dreaded consistently for the last three years.

This year the dread wasn’t as overwhelming as the years past, however still challenging nonetheless. I look forward to certain holiday events, however they are few and far in between. This year there were less parties and gatherings, and I didn’t even do my annual Fitness Gift Guide List for any of the publications I write for. None of this was intentional, it just was.

However even still I’m grateful to say that I feel a bit better this holiday season.


So when the one holiday event I always look forward to came along I knew I had to make the best of it. As the only party I will attend this holiday, the Equinox holiday party was and always is quite epic. I’ve been working for the company as a part time group fitness instructor for four years now and every year the holiday turn up gets better and better. Think thousands of fitness professionals, the best DJ’s in New York, food and booze galore and even live entertainment. Arial dancers hanging from the ceiling and one year Run-D.M.C. adorned us with his presence.

The best part for me however is to see all my work buddies transform from lycra and sneakers to satin and sequins. People really clean up nice and I could honestly spend most of the night people watching if the music didn’t keep pulling me out onto the dance floor.


Speaking of cleaning up, this being the first year I didn’t have to hunt down the perfect dress was in one word – perfect! I knew exactly what I wanted my dress to look like and when I went to the fashion district to pick up my fabric this satiny teal fabric jumped out. I bought 2.5 yards and pumped out this get up in about two weeks. I did little by little and the most challenging part was the neckline since it was my first pleated neckline. However after several pattern drafts and muslins I couldn’t be more happier with how it turned out.

Funny story, I almost lined it with sweat wicking material considering all the dancing I would be doing. But ended up just using a regular satin lining. However the thought made me laugh.


It is the little silly moments like this in fact that make the holidays bearable for me. Laughing at the little things even though I miss the big traditions my mother and I had during this time makes a difference. I count it all joy because while the holidays may be sorrowful now at least I still find happiness in the little things like a holiday dress.

The fact that both my little girl and big girl holiday dresses are the same color wasn’t planned. And this coincidence reminds me of this life. Even the unplanned experiences we endure can share the simple beauty of things that were and more importantly the things that will come.


I’m hopeful the holidays will be less sorrowful again, but until then I count it all joy.

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