Monday, 29 November 2010

Bug Season

I wrote this post last year. I wish I could say that the holiday spirit has already caught me this year but it wouldn't be true. But here's what has. I've had to run into the mall a few times this week and I remembered that there's something in the air this time of year that bothers me. I don't think I would be so troubled by it if it didn't have the power to infect me. See, while I was hoping to run in and get the few items I needed, the mall was teeming with shoppers. People were buying up Christmas gifts with determination and it made me panic.

I never shop this early. I usually take one or two days in the middle of December and get everyone on my list checked off. But this thing in the air at malls and Walmarts across the land during this season is like a bug. It gets you even though you have practiced healthy thoughts. Even though you wash yourself with truths like Christmas is not about buying a bunch of meaningless gifts for people who don't need them. Even though you've inoculated yourself with promises that as soon as it makes sense you will teach your children about the real giving, helping the people who really need it.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not above it all. I do buy meaningless gifts for people who don't need them. I excitedly talk about Santa on a daily basis with Deaglan. I bought a new Christmas rug for the front doorway just yesterday and I'm coveting a Kindle if anyone cares.

But I do it with a sense of guilt. Like this is wrong. Some deeper sense in me knows that it should be much, much more about altruism, gratefulness and extension and way, way less about retail, Santa and stocking stuffers.

So again, this year, I'm struggling with the season. On the one hand I have a duty to get giddy and enthusiastic for my kids' sakes but on the other, I could take Christmas or leave it.

I have a bit of the spirit though and have joined the gals over here for Merry SITmas


  1. I think Christmas becomes more commercialised every year and parents feel pressurised into spending more and more money on their kids. Most of stuff isn't needed, but we still do it.

    CJ xx

  2. I know the feeling. It drives me insane that stores have had Christmas stuff up since way before Thanksgiving. I can't stand it. So many people I know have told me they were done with Christmas shopping before Thanksgiving and all proud of themselves, but now they are telling me that they are still buying more stuff for their kids because there's so many sales.
    It's sad really, people buy stuff because they can't pass up on a "deal" but it's teaching kids to be consumers and sending the wrong message about what holidays are about when there are 100 gifts under the christmas tree.
    Oh boy, sorry for the rant. It's just that it gets to me.

  3. I'm feeling stressed about shopping this year. It seems like everyone is telling me that I better rush or there will be nothing left. It feels like it's a survival of the fittest mentality out there in the malls. I hate feeling like I need to be so aggressive in my shopping and timing. Of course, money is tight too which makes me really choosy this year.

  4. I spent my Black Friday at home shopping online in my PJs and sewing gifts. I actually really enjoy when I can sew something for someone. I think about the spirit of Christmas while I do so and it gives me a happy feeling inside.

  5. Thanks for stopping by my blog! If only they would put Christmas stuff up later than we wouldn't get tired of it!

  6. I go through feeling like this too. Sometimes Christmas is more work than its worth. Maybe we should just skip it. ;)

    Merry SITSmas

  7. I'm having a hard time when I hear about extravagence for the holidays when there are so many people struggling for the basics right now.

  8. Now our daughter is old enough to get into the excitement of Christmas I am looking forward to it, but generally speaking I am not a big fan of Christmas and I don't go out buying presents really early or going crazy over it all. I much prefer surprise presents and unexpected things and we will not be going crazy buying presents for our daughter either.

  9. When my bank accountant is drained and the best Christmas gifts I can afford are from the dollar store, I get a little bah-humbug myself.

    Volunteering at the Angel Tree usually helps!

    Hope you find your Christmas cheer. Take the kids and shop for an angel. :-)

  10. It's about balance. There's nothing wrong with Santa and decorating and gifts. But over-doing it makes it far less pleasant and meaningful, not to mention exhausting. I've reached a lucky stage - my kids have strong ideas about things they'd like and pick them out on-line for me to order, after being given a budget. When the stuff arrives on my doorstep, I wrap it and stuck it under the tree. They're happy, I'm happy.

  11. I made the decision to be peacefully paced this Summer and I am sticking to that, even during this holiday shopping season. Blessings to you and Happy Holidays. ;)

  12. The Christmas RUSH can definitely be catchy! I usually don't get too worked up over the gift buying and such, but I did find myself spending way too much time on Etsy today looking at little Angel figurines. Why? What on earth am I going to do with an angel figurine? When I had to shut everything off and walk away. ;)

    Very cute card - Merry SITSmas!


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