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Something you want, Something you need…

9th Dec 2015

Something you want, Something you need. Something to wear, something to read.Something you want,
Something you need.
Something to wear,
Something to read.

This was my motto for my kids for Christmas this year when they were making their lists. They get spoiled by their grandparents (and being a blended family, they have a lot of them!) as well as extended family, so really, they don’t lack for anything.

I also have to say that them getting every single thing they ask for leaves a bit of a bitter taste in my mouth. I worry that they don’t really get what Christmas means…that for them it becomes more about presents than anything. So this year, as a family, we are buying a goat. Not for our backyard, but for a family in need across the sea. I’m also hoping to find somewhere where over the Christmas holidays we can all volunteer for a couple of hours. They are incredibly fortunate (as am I) and I think sometimes it’s really good to be reminded of that.

When I told them that I wanted the above list from them…the funny thing was that they were pretty hard pressed to come up with things. With a little prodding and me coming up with my own ideas, the list came together and everything is purchased and on it’s way. I spent exactly what I had planned to, and some of what they are receiving will be a surprise, and some of it will be expected.

Since they were very little- they knew that Santa brought ONE present, so they had better make it a good one, and within Santa’s budget. They always came up with something reasonable, and Santa’s elves managed to make whatever it was in time.

I didn’t come up with the little rhyme that I used for the title of this- but I sure like it, and I think as parents- it’s brilliant, and more than enough. I think Christmas becomes about commercialism, and presents, and competitions on facebook, and less and less about peace on earth and goodwill to men.

I know that my kids love getting presents- who doesn’t?? But I also know, that their favorite parts of this holiday are putting up the tree and decorating the house, listening and singing Christmas songs, making cookies, and watching Christmas movies as a family. Last year my husband pulled them out of school for an afternoon of sledding and hot chocolate. That probably won’t happen this year, as we have no snow in Calgary! Those are the kinds of things that stick. Not presents. A great example of this is one of my girls said a couple of weeks ago that she would really like a knitting machine. So I sent her downstairs to the toy cupboard in the playroom….where she discovered a knitting machine she had asked for last year that hadn’t even been opened! So it’s not about the gifts, it’s about family.

How do you feel about it? Do you go crazy and buy ton’s of Christmas presents? Does it look like a toy store threw up in your living room on Christmas morning? What are the ways you limit your spending/gift giving? Do you take part in specific activities that show what the true meaning of the season is? What is your biggest pet peeve regarding Christmas? And do you have any great suggestions of where you can volunteer as a family in Calgary?

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