Once the weather starts getting nipply, my thoughts turn to Christmas. Okay, don’t start poking your eyes out with your morning grapefruit spoons. I KNOW it’s more than 3 months away. I’m just a planner, that’s all…I plan…I scheme…I scour sales and unexpected bargains. I love Christmas, it’s the only time of the year I actually don’t entirely loathe shopping.
But lately? The last couple years? Not so fulfilling. I want a memorable Christmas, a less-cluttered Christmas. I want a sparkly-sugar-cookie-Christmas. These are the thoughts swirling around my head this morning in gaily colored red-and-green shiny ribbons:
1) I want a Home Made Christmas with the extended families, but not sure if they’ll go for it. Long-time readers will remember that the Sergei-Mona household celebrates 5 Christmases (one with our own family of 4, one with my parents, and one with each of Sergei’s 3 parents/steps families). After a while, it’s like giving your niece $20 for her birthday and having her mother send your child $20 for her birthday…it’s tit for tat…it’s 2-2=0. Y’know what I want? I want someone to knit me a scarf. I want baubles purchased at Big Art Fair. I want homemade wine. I want love in a bottle, a bag, a small wooden box made by hand. OR…I want a gift certificate to a craft store, so I can make homemade baubles and bags and boxes for other people.
2) The kids have everything they want. They don't need a giant-sized teddy bear. They don't need a princess castle. They don't need a pinball machine in their room or a basketball hoop over their closet door. They have “stuff”. Enough “stuff”. I need to communicate with the inlaws and outlaws to Cut It Down. Give the kids small meaningful things. Give them your time. They'd be thrilled with a $10 gift card to the mall. They'd love to help you make cookies. Take them to a movie at the theatre, with popcorn and Milk Duds and a slushy. Tell 'em you love 'em. That's a great gift.
3) Also? I want the kids to appreciate what they have, what they get. My goal is to have little innocent “talks in passing” with them over the next few months, stressing selflessness, stressing community service, de-emphasizing the need for what the neighbor has. It's not that there won't be gifts under tree this year...but they don't need a floor full of meaningless gifts. Small is better. Small is good. Small means more.
4) What to get Sergei? I am at a total loss.