Julie's last week as host for Fun Monday is a timely topic - Christmas Shopping!
When do you start your Christmas shopping? Do you already have it done? Who is the hardest person to buy for? AND...when do you do your wrapping? Or does Santa do your shopping?
There used to be places I didn't mind shopping - Sears, JCPenney, but only if it wasn't crowded. Then for some reason they decided to add more racks of stuff so that you can't move through the store without brushing up against stuff. And instead of having a checkout in each department, they've centralized it so that everyone has to stand in a bunchy line that takes forever. I don't do that. So I never shop those stores anymore.
Online shopping is okay, but you don't get to see or touch or feel what you're buying until after it's too late. Unless it's a known quantity, I'm not keen on it.
Black Friday holds no appeal for me whatsoever as it seems to cram all the things I dislike about shopping into one horrifying event.
This year, I'm trying something different. I'm making Christmas for a few people. Small tokens of love and esteem and friendship. Buying things is strictly reserved for the couple of children in my life. I'm pretty sure they wouldn't appreciate a hand-sewn anything at this point in their lives, favoring things like video games or music or gift cards that let them choose their own. I'm also highly in favor of giving books (or gift cards for books).
The crass commercialism has made Christmas my least favorite holiday. I love the sentiments, the food, the singing, and all the candles - but the gift-giving has gotten so out of hand, a grabbing of stuff that I truly despise.
My favorite Christmas was the year we were all poor. My dad had been let go (early retirement) from his job. My husband was in his third or fourth year of being laid off, my brothers were all struggling. So we decreed a no-gift Christmas. Our tradition of going in together to get the parents a gift did not go by the wayside though - instead, we wrote stories of our favorite Christmases growing up and put them into a little book for them. There was no pressure or oneupmanship or disappointment in presents given or received. We got together, we ate, we talked and laughed. It really was the best Christmas ever. I wish they were all like that.
Next week, I begin my Christmas projects. I hope they will be received in the spirit it was given. With love.