Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas Amendment

In the spirit of the season, and rejecting the spirit of materialism, I propose the following amendment. Gifts may be exchanged if they fall under the following guidelines.

I will not be offended if I don't receive any gifts. 

Presents can be homemade.

Gifts can be bought second hand, as long as I will not be offended if they get re-donated.

I can purchase gifts that are locally made/grown. For example, items from the farmer's market or craft fair.

Presents can be something that you know the person really needs or wants (for example, socks).

Let's appreciate this Christmas season together! 
My sister wrote this up two months ago on a scrap sheet of paper. At first it was just an idea, but each of my immediate family plus my sibling's room mate plus my boyfriend signed it. It's only binding to those who enter the agreement. It might sound a little Scrooge-like, but it makes you re-evaluate the whole Christmas thing. 

What do you hope to get out of celebrating Christmas.

With times a bit tighter, out of  our family of  seven, plus the two extras, only two of my younger siblings are regularly employed. My Dad and brothers are waiting to sell a house. The room mate generally doesn't work and my boyfriend and I are both full-time students.

That's not really why this amendment has made us rethink the season, though. We don't need just more stuff. We don't need to just purchase to fill expectations. There has been some incredibly creativity, and a little bit of socially conscious purchasing going on in this household this season. I still have a few friends I shopped for more traditionally... But this Christmas is going to be a little simpler and, in some ways, a little more meaningful.

I absolutely love this time of year! 
However you celebrate, I hope it's an excellent holiday for you! 
Merry Christmas


Tabs A. Geek said...

That is a great amendment to make.

A few years back, our family made our own amendment of sorts. We each cut down our budgets, and often seek after things the person needs rather than wants (mom and dad usually take care of the need parts). The additional money we would normally have gone overboard with is then put towards buying presents/food for a family who couldn't otherwise afford Christmas. Our Christmases have gotten small, and I love it more than any where we used to get lots and lots of presents. It's a lot easier to remember why we're celebrating when not buried under the heavy coat of greed.

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