A bit late in the day perhaps, but I forgot to post this, and found it on my hardrive… apparently there is something to be said for periodically clearing it out.
I cannot truly decide if it is the fact that I am getting older or if it is ‘just me’, but this year a gift of two pairs of socks seemed to me a most fantastic thing. Now, I have recieved socks in the past, along with many unwanted pairs of underwear I always ended up with my brothers as his were unwanted also, but these were rather lovely.
One pair are of the walking, sturdy sock, variety and the other a delightfully quirky stripey pair, hand-knitted by my mother. All the more miraculous as she started them in January 2011 in order to make sure that they actually were completed for the following Christmas… for sadly she is not known to be the swiftest of knitters nor a completer of knitting projects. My purple sweater being a prime example of this sad fact.
Many moons ago I recieved simply the buttons of said jumper as I’d long since outgrown it and she was unable to make any further (viable) extensions.
Anyway, besides the point. This years socks were completed in August 2011, no doubt a record for my wonderful Mother. (I should clarify that this is by no means a criticism of her skill as a knitter, more to do with patience and availability of time, of which she has less than she would like, though make a hand-knitted gift all the more lovely and thoughtful) Time well spent and appreciated.
Perhaps then it is rather just me and my unusual appreciation of socks that made them so welcomed? How awfully Dumbledore of me I’m sure.
A hat, a scarf (thankfully nothing in the underwear department), shares in a remote controlled helicopter with my brother (we may be 28 and 27 but a good ‘toy’ is always appreciated), Elmer writing paper, coffee, a wine mulling kit and a fleecy dressing gown completes my stocking of beyond average happiness.
This year (2011) I especially like that most of my gifts were ‘useable’ ones and were therefore more… legitimate clutter. A book of jam recipes for example rom my friend is something I most certainly look forward to diving in to… as I suspect does she. The gift is based off a mutual love of a particular film.
“You wait til I make jam. It will rock your world.” Heck – Imagine me and you
Although in the ‘fun’ stakes, for really I am a big kid at heart, my housemate gave me Lego Harry Potter 5-7, which I am already in the final stages of, and my aunt gave me a double pack of toilet roll…. and a toilet roll origami book. Which was already in use throughout the house by boxing day.
As to myself and my own gift giving proclivities I admit, in a fit of sheer unsual organisation on my part, to have started looking for gifts at the beginning of November. I decided that this year I really wanted to consider what it was that I was giving to people. I wanted it to be well thought out and something that I felt they really wanted and would be fitting of the occassion.
Also, this early start meant I could do some serious bargain hunting and get more ‘bang for my buck’, meaning that I could then be more generous/thoughtful with my gift giving. For whilst I love, appreciate and am greatful for all that was given to me, I do so much prefer the giving and pleasing my family and friends. Not, I must hasten to add, for any sort of kudos or appreciation but rather just to know that they are happy.
As we all get older, I particularly like that our Christmas (familial) gets simpler and certainly not in any sort of negative way. I simply mean that it becomes more about what we actually want it to be. The four of us are all rather low key about the whole affair, particularly being non-religious, which I am very much in favour of.
We have fun, we play we have a delightful if remarkably filling dinner and exchange gifts, maybe we will watch a film or play Scrabble or whatever. Whatever it is is perfect for us.
We are a family of minimal traditions. We put the tree up on Christmas Eve (or the first Friday when School finishes), a communal activity BK always weasels out of, we have Mom’s chestnut and bacon stuffing as part of dinner (a must I assure you) and I think that might be it.
Lovely and low key. Again I reiterate, perfect! (for us).
Now Christmas’s with little kids are a completely different thing. I agree with Victoria Wood on this one. Little kids Christmas’ are exciting and all about them and I think that that is great. I can remember being very excited about Christmas because of all the people I would get to see.
So…hope all had a very Merry, happy Hannukah/joyous kwanza or happy solstice etc!