Thoughts on Christmas

Ugh, I got a horrible case of the sleepies today.  I’m just exhausted and I can’t think straight.  I think it’s stress…and lack of coffee.  I was going to go make some but I somehow got distracted…as usual.  It takes me most of my day to drink my one cup of coffee.

I wish Christmas time didn’t come with any stress.  I guess we do it to ourselves though don’t we?  Do we really have any fun at all at Christmas?  Do we go through all the stress and hoop jumping just for a few wonderful moments together with family or just to impress people?  Are those few moments worth it?  Just seems like we’ve gone and complicated the holiday.  Like we’re trying to hold onto those magical feelings we used to feel about Christmas that are really long-gone.

Christmas time can really be fun.  I had a blast last year with my family, playing Halo and watching as my brother in law drank a lottttt of booze.  We all giggled through watching Rocky and some other weird movie.  We also had WAY too much fun in the snow…well everyone else did…I wasn’t allowed cuz Ikey was in my belly.

I’m always pondering which Christmas traditions to hold to with my own kids.  Will we always spend Christmas at a Grandparents house or are we going to want to start doing it at home?  Do we do the whole Santa thing or not?  My side of the family does it but Brent’s doesn’t.  If we don’t do it, it might ruin it for his cousins on my side, if we do it then it’ll be confusing when we go to Brent’s families house.  I don’t really know if I much like the idea of Santa.  How to you explain the glamorous toys that he brings the richer kids?  My kids aren’t going to get the new batman toy or the latest Barbie doll or Disney movie.  I don’t believe in that stuff.

I think with my little family, once we do start having Christmas in our own home sometimes, we’ll just keep it simple.  Kids on too much sugar aren’t too fun anyway.  Being in the kitchen all day isn’t my slice of cake either.

Lately it just seems to me that we have a lot more stress than fun during Christmas.  It’s enough to make one feel scroogie.  I think though, when you do have those wonderful moments with your family, it does become worth it.  But why can’t we just make it a little more simple?

I don’t buy skads of presents.  I do like to send out a family photo along with a card and a Christmas letter.  I couldn’t muster up the whatever to do that this year but for sure I’ll do it next time.  We each only buy for one person amongst my siblings and parents and, although we go all out on the person, it sure is way less stressful than buying EVERYONE something small.  We enjoy our one big, massive present each year.  We enjoy figuring out what to give even more I think.  I also just do a family present for all the nieces and nephews.  A big book or board game, something for everyone to share and enjoy together.  I like keeping it simple, I’m not going into debt just because I feel obligated to buy stuff for people that they might not even use.

I don’t actually like getting loads of presents anyway.  As a kid I surely did but now, I like a few things I need and that’s good for me.  I’m never ungrateful for my gifts, I do really enjoy opening presents for sure.  But I’m always thankful I don’t get loads of them as I did when I was a kid.  I’m mortified about all the things my boys are going to get.  I don’t even know if I should buy Silas anything because he doesn’t NEED anything….just some mittens.   Maybe an extra chunk of money into his college fund.

One thing I DO love to do at Christmas is going to American Forests  and buying 30 trees to have planted.  They let you choose where they will be planted and they also send you their magazine which tells you about what they’re doing.  If you plant 30 trees then you make up for your families omissions each year.  It’s my new Christmas tradition.  A little gift to Mother Earth and it’s only $1/tree.  I get mine planted in Siberia to save the forests that the Siberian tigers live in.  So I guess it’s a little present to the tigers too.  Is it odd that I’d rather buy the Tigers and the Earth a present that my cousin’s uncle’s mother-in-law?

Anyway, that’s all just me thinking out loud.  I’m not sure what my point was, I guess I’m just thinking more and more that Christmas is way too over commercialized and way over done.  Visas are maxed, diets are failed, stress levels soar.  If that were MY birthday I would tell people to STOP and just enjoy themselves.

5 comments

  1. So strange how many people have been blogging about this lately. And strange how you’re changing your mind about Santa now. Here I’ve been worrying about it all this time…
    I got this idea from sweetmummy.lifewithchrist.org – they celebrate St. Nicholas (google him, it’s a great story, and he was a real person) on Dec. 6. They open their stockings with chocolate gold coins (the saint left coins in poor people’s stockings), small toys (the Saint made toys for poor children), a clothing item (like mittens or socks, because he helped clothe the poor). I think teaching children about someone that gave his life to helping others is far better than celebrating the “Coca cola” North American version of Santa. Even better would be to fill some stockings and give them to a family in our community that needs a little boost (and that could happen all year long too.)
    Things to think about, things to ponder.

  2. I think simple is MUCH better – especially when starting traditions. I dream of a day when I have my own little family and Christmas morning comes and we all stay in our jammies all day long sipping hot chocolate, eating snacks, opening *small* gifts, playing family games, watching a Christmas movie… I dream of it. You get to live it. Enjoy every waking hour with your little family. 🙂

  3. I don’t think you need to worry about explaining Santa giving different things to different families. We never got much and didn’t notice, because we got *something* and that was exciting. My niece and nephew were concerned when they first discovered Santa doesn’t come to my kids (we’re Jewish), but my SIL just explained that Santa respects different family’s beliefs and traditions and understands that we don’t celebrate Christmas. Santa is very good at knowing exactly what is right for each family. 😉

    I loved Christmas as a kid – so much that it was one of the hardest things to let go of when I converted. But as the years past and I had my own kids, I have to confess, I have begun to be quite grateful that I got off that particular treadmill. Christmas now appears to be a whirlwind of stress and unfulfilled expectations and everyone seems to be trying to desperately hard to be having the Most Fun Ever. And the expense! I don’t miss any of that at all.

    I still kind of miss the tree, though.

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