Not Quite Scrooge, But....

Friday, December 3, 2010

 I am feeling a little Scrooge-ish already regarding the holidays and gifts this year. Not Scrooge-ish really, that's not the right word,  but I can't think of a better one. I love buying/making/giving gifts to others but when it comes to me and my own kids I just want to stop the insanity before it all starts. Let me try and explain....I want the kids to have a wonderfully magic Christmas, I really do, I just don't  want them and us (me & Eric) and everyone else to get so caught up in the gift part of it. Mainly the amount of gifts, the number of things they/we all get. I am already feeling pressured by grandparents/ family to give them ideas for the kids and myself and I just can't make myself do it. Isn't that terrible? I know they want to get on with their shopping's not really fair.  But you know what I would really, really love from the grandparents? I mean,  really? A weekend away. For them to take the kids for a whole weekend so Eric & I can get away together, just the two of us.  I am not going to say that we never get away for an evening because we do and for that I am so thankful, but I could not tell you the last time we had a whole weekend away. Maybe two years. To me, that would be the best gift ever. But everything has to be equal and even between all the grown-ups and kids and I get that but that, to me, would be the best gift ever.

I guess that's what I wish we could really get back to, a gift that really means a lot to someone, not just trying to come up with one more thing because someone still needs to spend X amount of money on me. That's the part I hate. Does anyone else feel this way? I get this overwhelmed, almost depressed feeling around the holidays and a big part of it is not just the shopping and wrapping and engagements but it's a feeling of wishing the big-ness and more-ness of the holidays could just slow down a little bit or go away completely. Does this even make sense to anyone else? And if so, does anyone have any advice on how you handle this in your family, or just thoughts on this subject? I realize I can't force everyone else to conform to my way of thinking (damn) but I wish there were some little things we could do, changes we could make to get back to what is really important about this season.

As I go back and read over this I wonder if I come off  sounding like a grumpy little brat? Maybe a little? What some people wouldn't give to have people who wanted a list of things their children are asking for, I know that. Who loved them and wanted to make Christmas special for them. I get that and I am so thankful for our family and our life and for everything we have. I truly am. And I am not against gifts either... especially if it came in the form of a fancy new camera lens or this necklace...or this one. I guess the older I get I realize I/we just don't need that much, or want that much. And as far as Christmas goes? I love the holidays. Especially the baking and decorating and getting to be the parent and getting to experience Christmas all over again through the eyes of my children. I really love that part of it.

Tomorrow is the big day, we are planning to go get our Christmas tree. Hopefully hauling the boxes down from the attic, looking through all of our ornaments, the smell of our freshly-cut tree and listening to Elvis will help me shake this feeling and figure out a way to celebrate this season with true meaning.
Happy Friday everyone! I hope everyone has a great weekend. XO

{PS- Thanks for all the sweet comments yesterday, you guys are the coolest. But you knew that already...}


  1. I feel a lot of the same you do. I hate that I feel pressured to buy stuff... I hate stuff, and yet like you said we are so lucky. on top of it all, my kids' birthdays are right before christmas, so the amount of presents? it's insanity.

  2. First of all - I don't think you sound like a brat at all. You sound just like me in some way. ha. I actually posted a blog a while back about JUST this thing. This year we are not getting anyone any gifts - except for our two boys. They are getting one gift from Santa and a few books and plush animals from us. We will be 'celebrating' by decorating, stringing popcorn, watching old movies, listening to Christmas music, playing, reading, and baking. These are things that people did in the old days and had a blast! I agree - why can't people just forget about all the madness and gifts for ONE stinkin year. Or better yet - forever! ha. I understand. I love the holidays - and I love that people want to give my children gifts but - at the same time - they don't really 'need' them. So why not just have fun and celebrate that way? Like this post sweetie. :) And your pics are lovely!

  3. i so relate to this.
    it's like the "holiday" robs me of any of the normal pleasure i get from giving and recieving. obligation is just throwing up all over happiness. i don't know how to fix it, without being the jerk.

  4. i totally get what you're saying, and feel the exact same way. the notion of buying a gift for the sake of buying a gift makes my skin crawl. what we've done that seems to help a bit it to cut out gifts for anyone other than the kids. really, as adults there isn't anything we *need*.

  5. I get it. I feel the same way. I'm wondering though...can you ask your parents to give you the "gift of time" so you and your hubby can go away for a weekend? If they feel they have to also BUY you something, can they give you some money to help pay for the weekend? Maybe a nice dinner or tickets to a show or something you're interested in?

    This year I'm trying really hard to do more little things w/my girls throughout the season. Extra little things that don't cost much (like Gingerbread houses, going ice skating, etc.) but are centered around doing something together. We usually don't have time for these things b/c of school and the Nutcracker, but I'm trying hard to MAKE the time.

  6. I am all about down-sizing Christmas. My parents are great about keeping The Offspring, if my mom's health is well enough.

    We are making more...although the emphasis is now on the kids making things. I usually have the "Senske Sweatshop" the month of December and end up dreading the holidays.

    Not this year! And I think that's why I am excited and loving this season.

    I'm like you...there really isn't a whole lot I am really wanting. Camera gear is always appreciated...but I'm not staying up at night thinking about it.

    I hope good thoughts come your way and that you get your weekend away. If we were closer, your kids could totally hang here for a couple of days.

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  8. Our family has way too much 'stuff' I'm hoping the trend of making charity donations in behalf of someone else gains in popularity. I'm trying to keep my wish list to intangibles like iTunes music, concert tickets and virtual magazine subscriptions on the iPad.

    DS is getting things like skiing lessons and computer games. But yeah, it's really hard to keep the commercialism in check and stay focused on what is important.

    If you're a brat then so am I. I'd much rather have some baby chicks bought for a farmer in a 3rd world country on my behalf than another pair of earrings or some more scented soap.

    I suppose what we should all do is have a charity in mind or a concrete suggestion at hand when we're asked 'what do you want?' and have the guts to answer honestly. Eek!

  9. I couldn't agree more. I try to minimize the stuff overload for every gift occasion and still feel like we get too much. We're even nixing Santa (which really seems to be upsetting my mother and sister), but we so want our kids to grow up knowing what it's all REALLY about.

  10. when I was in high school I wrote a tale for our newspaper (do schools have them anymore?) about going without Christmas presents for a year! The reactions from kids at school were hilarious! It wasn't a true story, but I sure did get a lot of comments from people~the most common being disbelief! hugs, Cathy

  11. When my dad passed away 11 years ago, we all said no more gifts. Our lives and our focus changed so much. Best decision we ever made, but I know that's hard when/if everyone does not agree. Of course we do little things for the children in the family. Our Christmases have been so much easier, less stress, simple and enjoyable. I do bake a lot to give to teachers, neighbors, etc, but that is it.

    I got so sick and tired of starting my shopping in June, storing everything, yada yada.

    I also like the idea of giving the children only 3 gifts b/c that is what baby Jesus got.

    I hope your holidays are wonderful, and you get that weekend away!


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