Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Seriously. Christmas?

Two days ago, B announced that there were 3 months until Christmas.

Yeah, let that sink in.

Last night I had a dream that I had waited to the last minute and was running around late Christmas Eve trying to buy things. Many of the stores were closing,  I really did not know what I wanted to get for everyone and I hadn't even gone to the grocery store.

Yikes, back to reality. I am actually a planner and always start my Christmas shopping way ahead of time. I love a good bargain, so if you receive something from me, you can bet that it was on sale. That's not to say that it isn't a meaningful gift, I just usually put the time into finding the perfect present and then finding the best price.

In my family, we always start talking about Christmas in the summer. OK, sometimes we start talking about it in January. We cannot seem to find a present giving solution for our family. We do not have a large family (2 parents, 3 kids, 2 spouses and 3 grandchildren). Seriously, this should not be a hard issue, but it is and has been for the last 12 or so years. Personally speaking, I would just like to get each person something meaningful. It doesn't have to be expensive and some years it will be something I make, but at least I am sharing my love with every member of my family. Some people in my family are against chatchka and do not want anything meaningful or not. Others are picky in what they like to wear. Others live in very small houses and cannot fit another thing into them. Some think that you cannot give anything "decent" for under $25 a person (aka chatchka).

So it is every year that we are pitted against one another to try to figure out how to spend the little money that we have. As I am writing this, I am seeing how pitiful this must sound to you. Soooo, let me wrap this up (get it?) by asking what your family does when it comes to Christmas or Hanukkah. Do you do presents? Do you just ignore the day? Do you take a trip instead? Would you like to invite me to your holiday celebration? I promise I will bring something and not wait until the last minute.


Jillian said...

The Hines kids get one pricey gift and
stocking stuff. They get gifts from other family
members. There friends get inundated w gifts
and become very snotty with all the "things" they
have. Really, six pairs of Uggs and an imac pro and the
list continues. It is hard to keep up and stay on a
budget. No credit cards used is my gift to me and my
I am a coupon shopper, so our $25 limit doubles.
so who ever I get to buy for totally does well!
My kids try for more but the stuff isn't the reason for the holiday.
Good luck!

Tara R. said...

I actually ordered my first Christmas present last week. I would love to have it all done by Thanksgiving. I may be setting an unrealistic goal, but that's my plan.

Since our daughter moved out-of-state for grad school, we are thinking about spending the holidays with her. She is now living closer to my parents so it would work out for everyone.

Anonymous said...

My in laws like to "do big presents" in fact that helps because I can NEVER think of anything I want. So my husband and I discuss and pick something we could use ( GPS, gift certificates to a hotel, or the theater) My parents are catching on to that as well. Except for last year I got tires :( YIPPIE! On my husband's side there are 2 siblings with spouses and 2 kids. So we pick names instead of buying for 4 people. The name you get you keep for birthday and christmas. It's okay but I wish we could spice it up a little. We always buy something for the kids (3,1) Also with his side of the family we often pool our money to get the parents a big gift.
I only have one sibling on my side with a spouse they get one gift (movie gift cards, museum membership) and 2 kids and of course they get something ! Probably a longer response than you needed.

I can't find my blog said...

My idea: Draw names and fill stockings. Spouses can't have each other, since it's assumed that they'll buy for one another anyway. That way the gifts can't be too chatchka-ish, too expensive, etc. Think: gift cards, favorite candy, jewelery, or other small things they may need.

Melisa Wells said...

We do small gifts, but don't make a big deal of the holiday. Part of it is just because Hanukkah isn't a major holiday anyway.

I know, I'm TONS of help. :)