The Spirit of Christmas

I don’t like giving gifts at Christmas.  I don’t like giving gifts at Christmas because it is expected of me. Yesterday I was asked on two separate occasions, “Aren’t you giving him/them anything?” I thought for a second and replied “No.” “But he’s your nephew/they are your grandchildren (step).  You should at least give them money.”

Scrooge, I am not.  I am not stingy.  I have been known to literally give the shirt off my back-or at least something I was wearing-when a friend admired it.  I love to share what I have.  I love to give people presents.  But I want to do it when I do it and because I want to do it.  Not because society says the December 25 is a day for giving!

How did Christmas become a day of seeing how much money we can spend?  Retailors are made or broken by how the consumer spends for this “holiday” which was originally a “holy day”.

 It used to be a big thing to go shopping on December 26 to get great bargains.   Now everything is on SALE EVERY DAY.  I heard a comment from someone on the news the other night that you have to be an IDIOT to buy anything at full price.  So perhaps on December 26, if you go shopping for bargains, you will get paid to take the stuff away!

Gifts should come from the heart.  I have a friend who is a wonderful person.  She is truly the most giving person I know. She is not wealthy.  She works hard for every cent she has and she has an envelope in her pocketbook marked “God’s Money”.  In it there are several bills of varying denominations.  When she meets someone that is in need she shares “God’s Money.” She is my hero.  I strive to be more like her.

Do I shop at Christmas—of course.  I do succumb to the lore of the retail- but as I get older, not as much. I have so much stuff and so do most of my friends and family.  I am giving some of my stuff away and I am seeking alternative ways of gifting.    I love to cook and give of my joyful labors.  I enjoy knitting and have made several gifts. ZUM aromatherapy laundry soap is wonderful so I am giving it since everyone needs laundry soap. 

Yes, I will give Christmas gifts—to people I want to give them to and it might not even be on Christmas.

And I will work on giving more of myself and my resources whenever the need arises.

I don’t remember where I found this saying, but I have used it as our Christmas greeting from our funeral home in the local newspaper for many years.  I would like to share it with you:

Care Deeply.  Give Freely.  Think Kindly. And be at peace with the world…

For this is the spirit of Christmas, For this is the spirit of Love.

May the spirit of Christmas remain with you always.

 

ImageGifts from our kitchen–Sour Puss Sauerkraut and Sinful Hot Fudge

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6 Responses to The Spirit of Christmas

  1. Melissa Middleswart says:

    I’m with you! I sadly find much of Christmas too overwhelming to enjoy, filled with wretched excess. I’m always relieved the next day when I feel I can get back to normal. My gift giving is very minimal for the past 10 years, since I had to quit my job much earlier than I’d planned. I read that the woman who opened her home to that football player (Leigh Anne Tuohy of the Blind Side book and movie) has said that you should always give what you can if you can do it with a cheerful heart. And that’s my thing–I’m often very giving, but it’s of myself and perhaps food I’ve made, not so much of “stuff” most of which most people do not need at all! I give books to the youngsters in the family, as I feel that’s very important. Since quitting work, I’ve been taping a daily favorite tv show, plus umpteen Hallmark Xmas movies, for my sister. Lots and lots of my time, very little money, but it’s a great gift for her. But I hate the pressures of this season, even as I refuse to succumb to them. Stand firm!

  2. Bonnie says:

    I agree 100% with both of you. Keep on doing what you’re doing. I love the concept.

  3. Steph says:

    I agree completely. I love to give to my husband and our three daughters, but absolutely dislike shopping for anyone else. I suppose that sounds mean, but when I give to our family I know it is something they will enjoy, that won’t get tossed in a corner and forgotten. I hope you don’t mind, but I think I will be stealing your saying, maybe posting it on the white board at home. Thank you and Merry Christmas.

  4. jonne says:

    Thank you for this. I LOVE LOVE LOVE Christmas, but the hype and shopping is a hysteria that I get better at ignoring every year. Like so many things, it is what you bring to it.

    I too knit and cook for loved ones. Am intrigued by the idea of ZUM laundry soap. I see they have a Frankincense & Myrrh sent – how cool is that!

  5. Issy says:

    What a beautiful written truth ~
    I too agree that gift giving should be a delight, not a duty.
    Responsibility knocks but that’s a different door in the house of living, lol.
    Giving for joy, or remembrance, of sheer fun is all the better when it occurs by choice!
    Thanks for this (and many other) wonderful posts…..
    Issy

  6. TCrock says:

    I think you would enjoy Bill McKibben’s book Hundred Dollar Holiday. It talks about the history of Christmas and how it has always evolved to meet the needs of the day. The old ways of celebrating (feasting and excess) just don’t feel so joyful now that these things are readily available. Time however is incredibly valuable.

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