I am starting my Christmas List. By this I mean a list of things I want someone to buy me, not the kind of Christmas list consisting of things I plan to buy for other people. While it may seem childlike and cute, or perhaps egotistical and self-centered, the truth is that a good list of presents you want is a good thing to have.
When I was a child I would watch commercials with a pen and paper, so I could write down all the magical, beautiful toys I saw. I would generate a list of twenty or thirty items, far more than Santa had a budget for. As I got older, my list got smaller, and I was praised by my mother for being less of a greedy materialistic consumer, though I think she probably phrased it more nicely.
Eventually, I reached the, "I don't know, i have so much, I don't need anything, it's the thought that counts," stage of holidays. Bull puckey. Saying you don't want things is denying that you are a person, not just a mother, or wife. People always want stuff, we just are socialized to think we are not good people if we admit it.
If we don't have at least a few suggestions for people, do you know what that makes us? No, not nonmaterialistic people with strong values. Heck, I bet at least on occasion the Dalai Llama thinks, geez I'd really like a new yoga mat, and you can bet that Mother Theresa always had a list ready of things she needed for her orphanages and charity work, even if she didn't like, request a pair of purple socks for herself. She knew what she needed and I'm sure she had it written down.
Not specifying your wants and needs doesn't make you noble, it makes you a Future Recipients of Bad Gifts. When you open a bad present and aren't genuinely excited, it hurts the feelings of the gift giver, and that is just plain mean. You owe it to your loved ones to allow them to buy you shit that makes you jump up and down like a five year old.
If you really and legitimately don't want anything, then ask for handmade gifts. I had a friend who would challenge her sisters to see who could make the most fabulously bad item for under $30. You can make it fun.
At another time in my life, we did a charity gift exchange. We had to give $25 to charity in the other person's name, but it had to be a charity that reflected their personality. I bought pants and underwear for a homeless shelter in honor of a man who was legendary for dropping his drawers at family parties. It was as exciting to see what charity people could link to a funny story as it would have been to open bad gifts.
So, please, Mamas, keep Christmas fun. Don't do that whole, "All I want for Christmas is for my family to be happy," crap. Yes, yes, I know it is true. All any mother really wants is the gift of making her people happy. But it's ok to want something for yourself, too.
If you need inspiration, check out one of my favorite sites, PinUpGirlClothing, where you can be fabulously quirky no matter what your size. I'm sure you can find at least one item you can't live without!
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