Saturday, November 3, 2012

Christmas without Consumerism?

I've mentioned before that I started reading The Year of Less a little while back.  Well, she's started a new monthly challenge, but this one's so big, she's stretched it to two months.

What's funny is that I actually proposed something similar to this earlier this year to my less-than-enthusiastic children.  What I proposed was a homemade/handmade Christmas.  At the time, there was plenty of prep time, so even the less crafty in the bunch would have had ample time to prepare a thoughtful gift for each person on his or her list.  But the holidays are quickly approaching, and I get the impression that I'm the only one who's done any prep work at all.

Now, I'm not saying we won't do any shopping at all.  I fully intend to peruse the Black Friday ads looking for those items we've deemed necessary to purchase (like new sleeping bags for camping, since our old ones are nearly destroyed); however, I won't be doing my usual, throw-caution-to-the-wind Christmas crunch.  And I hope that the kids won't be too terribly upset when they see that I was actually serious about how I intend our holidays to play out this year.

Instead of piles and piles of store-bought gifts that lose meaning almost as quickly as they're opened, I intend to give of my skills and my time.  Instead of spending tons of time wrapping and unwrapping all those trinkets, I want to have fun together, spending that time with each other instead of with things.  I want us to be grateful for each other and for the mountains of things we already have in ample supply.  And if we have things for which we aren't grateful, I want us to spend the time we would have spent adding to those piles, removing those things for which we are no longer grateful.  There are plenty of others out there who have so little that, perhaps we should embrace the spirit of the season and give to others instead.

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