Day 341: How Many More Shopping Days Do I Really Have?

With thirteen days left until Christmas, I am starting to panic.  I’m not trying to be a negative nelly, but I am already over budget.  In June, I think, The Christmas list isn’t so big, and then December hits, and I remember all of the people I forgot to put on the list in June.

I still have so many people to buy presents for!   The problem, however, is the cashola, which is always a problem because we are terrible at money management and we still have some of the debts we accrued when my parents died and my student loan is still not paid off and Tom’s student loan just kicked in and of course, his car died and my lease was up and the kids, well, holy shit!   (People who have kids no what I mean.)

But it’s Christmas!

I have to tell all the people I appreciate how much I appreciate them, and how else do you do that than with a gift?  I mean, I cannot believe how wonderful some people are to us and how much they do for us through the course of the year– I have to get something special for each person so they know that I know how awesome they are!

I just have to face facts– what’s a few more hundred dollars in the scheme of things?

It’s the people I really forget about that make me sweat.  I always forget about the teachers until the week before school is out.  Between the three girls, they come into contact with eleven teachers through the course of the week, each of which impacts their learning; each of which is helping my children to mature and to grow.  Add on to that number, the Principal and a few teachers who offered time to Carson so she could do her Science Fair project.  Oh, and the dance teachers and the music teachers– let’s not forget about their influences as well.

Tom says, “What if you just don’t give a gift?  What happens then?”

I don’t know.  Nothing?  However, I  would have guilt– deep, pain in my stomach, I am a horrible person guilt.  Every other parent is buying the teachers gifts; how can I not be gracious, too?

What it really boils down to is that every year I think I can stay in budget and I don’t.  Every year we buy for so many people that Tom and I have stopped buying for each other.   When Tom asks, “What can I spend on you this year?”  I have to smile sweetly, pat his arm, and shake my head.  The ‘ole goose egg rears its ugly head, and we go giftless, yet again.   It shouldn’t really be an issue, though,  because if either of us really needs or wants something, we go out and buy it.  The vacuum broke and I bought a new one.  The microwave broke and I bought a new one.  I needed new shoes; I bought new shoes.  Tom needed a fall coat; he bought a fall coat.   Neither of us really needs anything.

I may never get a Christmas gift again.  It doesn’t matter.  I love buying, so my present is trying to find other people the perfect gift.  I anticipate a spectacular Christmas with many smiles.

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5 thoughts on “Day 341: How Many More Shopping Days Do I Really Have?

  1. I was a teacher for 40 years. Please, let me help you get off the hook. No gifts to teachers, colleagues, bosses, etc. Why is it we try to find a gift to say all those special things to special people when it is the words of appreciation and small acts of kindness that are the greatest gifts. Say those things in your heart with words this year, no presents. If you are spending, invest in your kids, but give them the best gift, time with Mom. And hubby, make a date and keep it. I remember many of my students and some special parents, but it was words that created our bond. And my hubby died two years ago after a short illness. Treasure your time together with yours. Those are the things you will regret not having done, not buying gifts.

  2. Cheryl– I appreciate you. There, now I dont have to buy you a gift 🙂

    BTW you can return my gift as long as you verbalize how much you appreciate me. I do not need material objects in order to feel love. But I really need a new pair of jeans if you just cant stop yourself!

  3. Kind of like Shari said … you don’t need to get teachers gifts. I mean, yeah, getting a few cookies or chocolate covered pretzels is cool, but it’s the cards that mean the most. Make a handwritten card to the teachers and share your gratitude. Heck, have your kids make the handwritten cards to the teachers. It shows the same thoughts. Teachers don’t care if the gifts are technically from the parents or the students; they know that your thought went into it.
    Plus, homemade cards are WAY better. Way cheaper, too. Grab a couple pieces of red and green paper, a couple of markers that you already have, and BAM, done.

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