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Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Ho Ho...Oh Whatever

I can't put my finger on the why, but I am so not in the holiday spirit this year. It's odd though, because this is the first year we've been invited to holiday parties outside of our families. We even hosted my company's holiday party this past weekend. I'm even trying to pull together a last minute cookie exchange with the neighbors. But my heart isn't really there.

For example, last year, I went way overboard with gifts for the kids. They're 5 and 2, so Christmas is a big deal for them. I was all into the buying and the wrapping and didn't care how much I was spending (that particular feeling went away by January when the kids had stopped playing with any toy brought by Santa). But I was happy to do it because it just felt so good.

This year, not so much. We scaled way back on the gifts, partly because Charlie needs to learn that he can't simply get everything he wants. This problem is somewhat our fault and somewhat the fault of all his grandparents, but we know we have to nip it in the bud. The other part of why we pared down the list is because it just doesn't sit well with me to spend hundreds of dollars (on a gift for ANYONE) in the name of a holiday. Doesn't anyone remember what Christmas is actually supposed to be about? In my little corner of the world, that answer is a resounding NO.

I don't want to teach my kids that we have to go into debt to satisfy the selfish wants of others for Christmas. Granted, I love seeing my kids' excited faces on Christmas morning as they tear away the wrappings to find the toy they've longed for all year. But in my kids' cases, these things will be things they've only craved for about 2 weeks, when I finally told Doug that we need to stop buying things because it's almost Christmas! It's not his fault; he loves to see Charlie's face when he receives a new CARS car or Star Wars figure. He gets SO excited. But I say, enough is enough.

So this year, I hope my Bah Humbugs aren't loud enough to sadden anyone else's Christmas celebrations. Maybe it's another symptom of the phantom illness. Who knows? In any event, this year, just call me Scrooge.