The joys (and rules) of Christmas shopping

Oh the joys of shopping.  The joys of Christmas shopping! I have to admit, I am a grinch when it comes to shopping.  Unlike my sister, who is a shopaholic, I hate it!  I have no time for it and I don’t wish to spend any of my spare time gazing out at shopfront windows on a Saturday afternoon. This is pretty bad considering I live literally around the corner from one of Melbourne’s biggest and best shopping centres.  But I don’t mind Christmas shopping.  As I mentioned in my previous post I LOVE CHRISTMAS so doing the Christmas shopping is not such an arduous task for me. Perhaps it is the pure joy of buying and giving to other people that gives me great pleasure.   How noble of me but I can already see my mum, brother and sister grunting and smirking when they read this.

Yes Christmas is about giving and sharing but that is not why I enjoy Christmas shopping. I wouldn’t say I love it either but it has a lot to do with the atmosphere that we immerse ourselves in at this time of year.  What is difficult however is what to buy our loved ones and friends for Christmas.  What do you get people who already have everything? What can one buy that is under $20? No, I’m not serious but how about $30? Ok, maybe $50. Alright between $50 and $100? How much should we spend and budget for and should you make it a rule to spend exactly the same amount of money on each person?  Oh there are too many rules, too many things to consider, yet at the same time too easy to forget the symbolic meaning of Christmas.

No there are no rules and it doesn’t need to be as complicated as I have stated.  But there is a rule in our family we do adhere to.  That is, for the last couple of years, we have agreed on a set budget per person.  No one should spend over the limit.  Many families, particularly larger families, have Kris Kringles or if you live in the UK, it’s called Secret Santa.  Of course, this is very common in workplaces and in fact I am faced with a very difficult task this year in my workplace. But that is another story.  Our family does not have Kris Kringles because we are greedy and like to receive more than one present. But then one could argue we are comprising quality for quantity.  

Question: Do you and your family have any particular arrangements or rules in place for Christmas presents? What are some good ideas and suggestions for presents this year?

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~ by Shae on December 3, 2009.

5 Responses to “The joys (and rules) of Christmas shopping”

  1. I have a system I adhere to at Christmas and it is as follows:
    For adults:
    “My presence is your present and your presence is my present so we shall all bask in the joy that is our presence.”
    For the kids:
    I purchase each of the something that i think will bring them joy. It is not always successful so in that case… my presence is their present…. ha ha ha

  2. I have only one rule- I’m not going Christmas shopping. If I can’t buy it online then it’s bad luck 🙂 i’d happily take a gift from a friend consisting of ‘1 free shopping trip’ and they can get my presents for me and pick up one for themselves.

  3. I love xmas shopping especially when I was in London, with all the shops lit up in xmas lights. I would put on my coat and gloves and go shopping.

  4. I have a confession, I don’t really like Christmas. Growing up we had no money and my mum could only afford those terry toweling slippers for me, it got serious when they went up to $5.00. I made a big deal about how wonderful and happy I was to receive my gift. But that was my giftto her, to make her feel like she hadn’t failed me and that I was happy. (I should have got an OSCAR for my acting.) All the tantrums by supposed adults on the day, has killed it for me. Yes I know, being a good woman and going to church, I know why we really celebrate, but my heart isn’t in it. I dread December and I am so happy when January finally comes around.
    My perfect day, no phone calls, no demands by anyone and perfect peace. Yes, I go and buy little things for my children and the odd gift but that’s it. My Christmas is small but as I say to my children. Remember how many days their are in a year and to always say something special to people while they are still here, never regret what you should have said. Expectations of the world can sometimes leave you feeling empty, always remember to be thoughtful and gracious. Kindness and empathy are a gift that no one can give you, but what a gift for someone else.
    Example: A man got off my train, he was injured (I found this out later) and grabbed the first pole he found, others walked past as if he wasn’t their. I stopped to ask if he was ok. The next time I saw him he thanked me,tears streaming down his face. This man is alone with no one to think of him. He had fallen and broken his ribs but continued on and went in to work, he had didn’t want to sit and home alone. Just this little gift shone light into his world. The most precious gift cannot be wrapped and stuck under a tree.I do hope someone gives you a precious gift. God Bless

  5. Hi Shae, I’m back,
    My last message last year spoke about the man I asked if he was ok and had broken ribs. I am sad to tell you he died a few weeks ago, but knowing he knew true kindness before he died is special.
    Something extra special happened last night, God put a homeless man on my heart, a man with nothing and no one to care.
    God wanted me to put together a pack for him, backpack size that is with all the essentials you would take for granted. Toothbrush, paste, holder, soap, holder, first aid kit, cotton buds, notepad, pens, knife, fork, spoon, shaver, shaving cream etc. Towel, face washers, hankerchiefs, shorts, t-shirt, jocks, socks etc.
    When I saw him I said “Hi Leslie, how are you?” I explained to him that God had put him on my heart to give him this gift. He didn’t register at first but when he did the light in his eyes shone so bright and he was jumping up and down. I showed him the list on the card of the contents in the pack and as an extra from me I gave him a shopping bag with tins of food and fruit and a big bottle of water. The water is another thing that I think we all take for granted something we all can access everyday and so very essential to our wellbeing.
    I received such joy getting the pack together washing and ironing the items (putting care into everything I was doing for him) and the icing on the cake was his reaction what happens know is up to him. I am so thankful to be the vessel used for this blessing. Ask God who you can bless this christmas and don’t ever doubt what you receive is worth more than anything else have a blessed christmas and happy birthday Jesus

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