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Loving My Actual Christmas

This Christmas can be different.

The Christmas season is a particularly difficult time for women to slow down and relish what’s right in front of them. An annual marker for many, it is a holiday that can often remind us how life is not going as we’d planned. Our family relationships remain strained, our finances stretched, and our schedules stuffed with too much to do in too little time.

Following the formula of her successful Loving My Actual Life, Alexandra Kuykendall shares with readers her own personal experiment to be completely present in her life as it is during the holiday season. Addressing the themes of Advent and Christmas, she reflects on hope, love, joy, peace, and relishing the season, with practical pullouts on common Christmas stressors, such as finances, schedules, and extended family. Kuykendall’s signature candor helps women go easy on themselves, remember what truly matters, and find joy in their imperfect Christmases.




What others are saying….


Does the hustle of the holidays threaten to knock the merry right out of your Christmas? Too many tasks and too little time is often a recipe for a yuletide disaster. But before you toss out the tinsel and give up altogether, grab a mug of hot cocoa and read Loving My Actual Christmas. Alex Kuykendall has crafted a rescue manual that will enable you to save your sanity as you savor the Savior, focusing on the true essence of the season.Karen Ehman, Proverbs 31 Ministries speaker and New York Times Best-selling author of Keep It Shut: What to Say, How to Say It and When to Say Nothing at All and Listen, Love, Repeat: Other-Centered Living in a Self-Centered World. Wife and mother of three.


I love when a book gives me practical help for today, but also much-needed hope for tomorrow. That’s what Alex Kuykendall does with Loving My Actual Christmas. Combining the sane and the sacred, Alex keeps the wonder in this holy day, while removing the unnecessary and unrealistic expectations that can make us forgo the joy that we can actually experience. I will be rereading this each October to prep my head and my heart for the holidays.Kathi Lipp,Bestselling author of Overwhelmed and The Get Yourself Organized for Christmas


Women give birth to Christmas. (Pant! Pant!) Well, actually, one woman literally gave birth to the very first Christmas and ever since, we women have been co-creating Christmas in our homes, families and cultures. We long to remember the real reason for the season, celebrate it and – here’s a thought – enjoy it as well. But oh, my, how to do so amid the mess of real life? Alexandra Kuykendall takes us on a quick trip to what matters most in her book, Loving My Actual Christmas. In this short and practical read, she offers perspective and fun while also ladling out a healthy helping of doable.Elisa Morgan, Speaker, Author, The Beauty of Broken, Hello, Beauty Full - Co-Host, Discover the Word - President Emerita, MOPS International


Do you love Jesus but secretly dread Christmas? This is the book you need in order to fall in love with the season again. While reading this book, I found myself regaining the same sense of wonder I had when I was a child on Christmas morning. Alexandra Kuykendall is like your personal Christmas elf. With humor, winsome stories, and practical ideas, Alexandra will help you put the happy back in your holidays.Jennifer Dukes Lee, author of The Happiness Dare


Of all of the Christmas gifts you will receive this year, reading this book may be the most significant. Do you want a Christmas filled with memory making rather than crazy making? Do you want the holiday to be about the real rather than the artificial? Then join Alex in her 4-week experiment to love (not stress!) your actual Christmas. Using the pillars of traditional advent – hope, love, joy, and peace, she offers the chance for meaning and contentment to replace hurry and frazzled. If you want this year to be different – if you want to throw out the old way of doing the holidays in order to invite a better one into your home, then read this book, and more importantly, live out the experiment in your own daily life. The ripple effects of your decisions this Christmas will be felt for, potentially, generations.Krista Gilbert, Author of Reclaiming Home, co-founder of The Open Door Sisterhood, and co-host of The Open Door Sisterhood Podcast


As a mom of ten Christian is a much anticipated time of year. I anticipate joy and fun, but just as great is my anticipation of rushing, stress and longing to focus on the real reason for the season. Alex’s book is like a breath of fresh air. She shares real-life struggles we can all relate to. More than that, Alex provides practical help and inspiration to help busy moms, just like me, to shape this season into one we can truly celebrate and enjoy. I highly recommend this book. In fact, it’s going to be one of the first gifts I’ll be buying and sharing this holiday season!Tricia Goyer, USA-Today Bestselling author of over 60 books, including the Christmas novel /Where Treetops Glisten


I wish I had read this book 18 years ago when our family began celebrating Christmas! Be freed from the chains unrealistic expectations and soul sucking busyness, while stepping into the beauty and life giving force that is the celebration of Jesus’ birth. Prepare to rethink your celebration and truly love your holiday this year.Cherie Lowe, author of Slaying the Debt Dragon: How One Family Conquered Their Money Monster and Found an Inspired Happily Every After


Alex had me laughing through the pain of identifying all too well with the expectations of a perfect Christmas. She reminds us to go easy on ourselves and those around us, offering gifts of hope, love, joy, and peace throughout the season.Sarah Harmeyer, founder and chief people gatherer, Neighbor's Table


Slowing down in life is hard enough for women, but slowing down during the Christmas season seems to be the worst. Yet that’s the time when there’s so much joy, love, and peace to be celebrated within our homes with our actual, real-life people. Alexandra shows us how she took on the challenge of loving the Christmas season and how we can do that as well. As a mama of four, I know that there’s nothing I want more than to love Christmastime with my family! Thanks for showing us how we too can take on the challenge!Jamie Ivey, host, The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey, author of If You Only Knew




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