Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The exhaustive exercise of Christmas shopping.

Every year is the same.  I know Christmas is coming.  Since October 1st there have been Holiday decorations up at Target...and not Halloween ones, frigging Christmas ones!  So I have been walking around my favorite store in the world with huge blinders on.  It is one of the most exhaustive exercises,  spending money that YOU DO NOT HAVE on CRAP PEOPLE REALLY DON'T WANT just because it's Christmas!!  I mean there have been a handful of Christmas's that I have gotten something I could not live without...this year will be one of them.  Tires.  Yes you heard correct, I am getting tires from my husband.  And truthfully, what is more meaningful then your spouse not wanting you to careen off the road with both the kids in the car during a blizzard?  I think you'd be hard pressed to find anything as heartfelt as that.  Would I love some new bling on my fingers? Sure, but what would happen is about two hours after the exhilaration had worn off I would feel guilt.  Guilt that we splurged on something I WANT and now something WE NEED is going on the back burner.

So about this time of the year I feel the pressure.  The infamous question starts getting asked, "what do you want for Christmas?"  and if I was being honest I would say nothing.  Just get gifts for the kids and maybe a babysitting pass so that Dov and I could go out to dinner some night. I am serious when I say that.  They would need to do it without complaint though, that would be the GIFT part.  No time limits or splitting them up, you get both and we come home when we please.  BEST GIFT EVER!  Lets take the pressure off of each other.  We all know that raising a family of four on one income does not lend itself well to dolling out lavish Christmas gifts on everyone and their brother.  If I had the extra cash I would be the first person to be presenting Ipads and flat screens and kindles or whatever the fancy gift of the year is going to be.  I love seeing someone open a present that is awesome.  There is no better feeling in the world!  What I don't love is watching them open a gift that I know is not great and then watching the pathetic act of gratefulness that follows. Then the next year you get it wrapped up and given back to you (yes that has happened, you know who you are).

Last year I did try to pull back with the Christmas gifting and honestly it went worse then I had predicted.  You tell people you are just going to worry about the kids having a nice Christmas and then your the scrooge when they blatantly ignore your request and present you with a gift.  Well luckily I am a smarty pants and knew that regardless of my no adult gifting policy there would be gift swapping.  So at the ninth hour, on Christmas eve, I went out and bought gifts for everyone.  Could any of them tell me what their gift was now?  Probably not.  And that is just the point.  Come on over and have a meal, I will buy it, cook it, and clean it.  That has to be as nice if not nicer then any bath salts or body lotion right?  At least I think so.  So maybe I am a scrooge or maybe I have adjusted to living within my means and feel much better when I do.  I am happiest having some drinks and a nice meal with my family, save the $10.00 prepackaged bath products for someone else...pretty please.  Oh and Merry Christmas.   Remember keep it simple,  I love you anyways.

1 comment:

  1. Oh, I hear you SO loud and clear. We're also a one income family and every year I try to keep things tight but it gets out of control. I panic, I shop at the last minute, and then we end up paying for it well into the month of January. I'm really hoping my family understands just how much of a budget I have this year(I've volunteered to do Christmas dinner for 10 so that will be the main priority. You're right about that in itself being a gift).

    Long gone are the days of double income, no kids, and I really hope I can stick to it this year and have a pleasant January without bills piling in.