We managed to avoid the shops completely this Christmas, with nothing to buy there was no reason for us to be anywhere near them… despite the fact that a 24 hour department store opened less than a kilometer from our current house sit, causing an absurd amount of excitement within our local community. We went small for christmas, handmade jars of pickles and gingerbread and chocolates, little bottles of fermented water kefir, soft and colourful dinosaur tails for the kids… small, simple and no need to visit a store.
I watched from afar the widespread rush of consumerism during the lead up to Christmas with equal dismay and curiosity. I watched people use social media to prompt their loved ones on gift ideas and solutions to the ever growing concern about ‘what am I going to get for Christmas?’ I watched as people posted photos of the towering piles of presents set up under the tree from Santa on Christmas eve. I wondered where they put all that loot in their homes…
I looked at Bo’s little pile of regifted and thrifted Santa gifts and wondered if she was missing out… a book about fairies (the only thing she asked for this year), a found wizard hat, a jar of shells from the beach and a little tin of blueberries and mini gingerbreads… and I knew she wasn’t, she was of course totally overwhelmed by all that on christmas day… When I asked her on Christmas eve what she thought Christmas was all about, she replied, ‘it’s about being with friends mama, and holding hands, and singing…’ and I realised that we have somehow managed to keep her protected from the need to consume; for now at least.
Christmas day was a simple affair of little gifts. Even my mother got into the spirit of regifting and gave me her old sewing machine as my christmas gift (which was a wonderful surprise, because I borrow it often enough, it’s nice to call it mine). The rest of our day was a long lazy lunch with friends and their kids… nothing fancy, just good friends who didn’t necessarily have anywhere else to be, came together, to eat and drink and swim and laugh… and it was perfect.
Besides accidentally cutting off the top of my finger with a mandolin during christmas prep on christmas eve and spending a few unplanned hours at the clinic… Christmas went off with no stress. No drama. No debt.
Now that’s a happy Christmas.
I hope yours was exactly what YOU were hoping for, too. x
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