Sunday, 30 October 2011

THE DISAPPEARING (AND REAPPEARING) CHRISTMAS LIST

That's it, I have to admit it, I cannot find my Christmas list- did I even start one? I really can't remember! But actually my other half thinks I did, so I'm not imagining things. Wait a minute...(jumps up looks in the "junk, pencils, crayons, paper" drawer and flicks through numerous half started A4 lined note pads) - found it!
Well, I have to say it's a disappointment - only 2 people with gifts beside their names and, I will freely admit, these are "regiftings"! My regifting process has to be highly organised - I never want to be in the agonisingly embarrassing position of realising that I've regifted something to the original giver! I have a relative who once carefully wrapped up a bottle of hand cream I had given her in a very unusual make boxed set about 5 years before. It smelled a bit funny so I threw it away and made a mental note about her generosity (and her memory) - I always at least I make sure I quickly rotate gifts!
On my list so far there is a book that my son was about to donate to the charity shop (in excellent once-read condition) and a set of men's smellies in the usual box/bag which my husband really wasn't going to use (he already has a few from many Christmases ago!).
So that's why my list already has something on it. I have to be sure the gifts go from one side of the family to the other, so labelling and note-taking are a must in my regifting system.
As a person who feels quite depressed about the amount of money spent and the debt accrued generally, at Christmas, (see my 2008 post on just this) I have no shame in regifting and keeping my expenditure low. I do try to buy appropriate gifts for the person concerned, but also try to only spend around £5 on each gift (but considerably more for my husband, parents and children- I might add!). I cannot face a credit card bill in January, so I buy small and regularly and use all my loyalty card points and survey credits to help me spread the expense.
The sheer escalation of cynical marketing by the big stores at Christmas, just depresses me. I'm not that religious, but at this time of year, I do often think back to why we are all celebrating Christmas in the first place - and it doesn't have much to do with the rampant commercialism we see on our high streets and in the shopping centres now.

It is, as ever, the thought that counts.

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