It is no secret on this blog that I LOVE Christmas! It truly is the most wonderful time of year for me. Things I look forward to:
- Annual Cookie Making Day
- Decorating the House
- Picking out the Christmas Trees
- Decorating the Christmas Trees
- Moving Jack the Elf all Around the House
- The Smell of the Christmas Tree
- All. The. Christmas. Songs.
- Christmas Parties
- Christmas Eve Dinner
- Spending All of Christmas Day in Our Pajamas
- Christmas Shopping!
Christmas shopping may be the last one listed here, but it’s one of my most favorite parts of the season. I pride myself on buying really great gifts. I do this by taking cues throughout the year, listening to family members tell stories and gleaning ideas, seeing what they could use in their lives to make them better/easier/more fun, and then just finding gifts I know they will love but they’d never buy for themselves. (There are also the “must have” gifts that I get them; not the “hot gifts of the season”, but the gifts they must have to replace something they currently use or do that drives me bananas.)
My weekly screen report showed that my phone time was up 162% last week for an average of 5 hours and 27 minutes a day. At least 2-3 hours of that time was spent researching Christmas gifts! The remaining hours were spent on Wordle, Instagram and Spotify shame listening to Christmas carols in my car.
Buying Christmas gifts makes me so happy! Most of my shopping is done online, however I do venture out on the Saturday after Thanksgiving each year with a deal friend. Granted, a lot of that shopping is for ME, because I’m not going to pass up a good deal for myself because that would just be silly.
Last year, I wrote about my role as the family’s travel agent. It appears, I am also the family’s gift guru. Right around this time of year, I start to get the requests from family members about what they could get for Little Mister or Mr. KK. So not only do I need to get them gifts for myself, but I need to find enough gifts and ideas that other people can give them too. Oh, and add in the extra layer of figuring out Santa gifts for Little Mister, too. No one needs this many gifts, especially our child.
Because of this, I try and get all of my shopping done early. That way, I have the last 2-3 weeks in December to focus on what others can get my loved ones.
Don’t get me wrong, we have some family members who are VERY difficult to buy for even for me. (They will all tell you that I am the one who is hard to buy for, but that is false! I am SO EASY to buy for.) So that takes extra time and creativity. But there is nothing better than that Eureka “Ah Ha!” moment when I uncover the perfect gift for him or her.
Wrapping Christmas Gifts
Oh, how I love to wrap gifts! Each year I try and have 1-2 wrapping paper themes/colors, and each person gets their own wrapping paper (this makes it easy to group presents under the tree and it looks really nice, too!). Then, I set aside 2-3 hours (or at least half a day if I’m doing it all at once) and get to it. I put on the Christmas music, spread out all my wrapping supplies, and put myself on Do Not Disturb mode. Sometimes I’m able to take a day off from work to tackle the wrapping. Other times, I start after Little Mister goes to bed, Air Pods in, and wrap until 1am.
So what’s it like being the family gift idea generator?
It’s hard work!
First, I have to think ahead far enough in my own gift planning to ensure that I am giving the gifts that I want to give. Once those are purchased, I will review my Plan B gift option list, the ones that didn’t make the first cut to have my name on them. These are usually low hanging fruit to give away to other people to get for someone. Once I run out of the back up gifts, the challenge begins.
For example, Little Mister needs ZERO things for Christmas. ZERO. It was hard for ME to think of Christmas gifts for him. There is no room in the playroom, we can’t fit another thing. He doesn’t even know what to put on his Christmas list. This says to me he doesn’t need anything!
We are barely getting him any gifts. And to help combat too many gifts, gifts he doesn’t need and just plan STUFF, I have asked the Grandparents to limit their gifts to 5 gifts. AND, they cannot be sneaky and put 20 things in one box and call it a single gift. Even with the gift limit, I’m still having a hard time thinking of gifts for them to get for him. I want this Christmas to be fewer gifts, but more meaningful gifts.
This is a timely post, as it is Cyber Monday! I do have a few deals to catch…happy shopping!