Thanksgiving is actually my favorite holiday. It has all the togetherness and home cooking of Christmas without as much stress and definitely without the commercial drive to buy everything in sight. In all frankness, I'm not really looking forward to Christmas this year. I'm sick of buying and giving presents to people who don't really want them or need them. Just how many iPod gift certificates does a person want in their lifetime anyway? And how does that make any kind of positive difference in anyone's life? I'm turning more and more into a Scrooge every day.
That being said, I still want to get something for my kids and my husband. I like buying them stuff because I get to see them enjoy (or at least use) their gifts. Isn't that the point anyway? How can we truly enjoy giving when we have no idea how the gift impacts the person?
This year, I want everyone who feels compelled to buy me something to go to AdventConspiracy.org and donate money to Living Water International instead. Wouldn't it be cool to be part of fixing a global problem? As many serious global issues as there are, this is one that is rather easy to mend. And I don't have to know the people to know how they're impacted. I've hiked around for days and had to carry all my own water on me. Having water fresh and close by is such a blessing. I am always so glad to be able to turn on the tap and drink my daily 3L of water. I'm sure the people receiving the "gift" from the LWI folks will be much more grateful than I ever could be.
Something Christmas-related that did crack me up was this article from MSNBC. Call me mean, but check this out:
Such basics will likely resonate with consumers like Muna Abdushukui, 29, who lost her job working in a gift shop two months ago, and has had a hard time finding work.
Abdushukui, who was at the Mall of America in Minneapolis recently with her 3-year-old daughter, said she's just sticking to the necessities.
"I'm buying food," she said.
If she's only "buying food", then why was she at the MALL OF AMERICA???!!! Does that seem strange to anybody else? If you're trying to lose weight, you stay away from buffets. If you're trying to save money, you stay away from malls-especially one like that. I'm sorry, but it's just funny. I'm find zero humor in her difficulty finding work, so please don't think I'm horridly unfeeling and mean. It's just the journalist's choice to include that location with that quote is unintentionally hilarious to me.
Aside from that strange humor, the article has good news for all you folks still planning on celebrating a typical over-the-top American-style Christmas. Apparently, we haven't spent enough in stores this year, so they're going to seduce us into parting with our money by offering their stuff at great prices...read: a SALE. I used to be such a sucker for that word. Now it usually only works in the grocery store. Buyer beware! Do your research before buying anything on sale, especially if it's from a chain store. Trust me, they are going to make their money somewhere, so stick to your guns and buy only the bargain you've validated!
Here's a good Christmas challenge: Review your gift list and see how many people you can trim from it. If you don't really want to give the person a gift out of love or out of desire to fulfill one of their needs, then why are you giving it to them? If you must give them the gift due to familial standing or something like that, then give a donation in their name instead. That way, you can help a cause you truly believe in vice giving the person something you bought at the last minute. Just a thought.
-Domestic Goddess out.