- Our first Married Christmas (how exciting!)
- My first Unemployed Christmas (how... exciting?)
- My first MassiveNumbersOfIn-Laws Christmas (really exciting! Nieces and nephews, oh my!)
- An attempt at following the Advent Conspiracy as closely as possible (helps with item #2 on this list...)
- My brother has a new girlfriend, my best friend/PLP (platonic life partner...) and her husband have moved to Atlanta, I'm completely off dairy, our house is more focused on a baby in a manger 2000 years ago than a gift under the tree, my favoritest Sarah is expecting her first baby in March, only one more month of a Bush in the White House and I discovered this year that I love fava beans.
In an attempt to reign in the crazy gift-buying that I seem to get swept up in every year, Matt and I decided that I would make most of our gifts, as my days have been rather freed up as of late... (grimace/grin) It seemed like an innocent and easy way for us to be mindful of our finances and put more meaning into our gifts... It quickly transformed into an all-out obsession and time vacuum in which I made fleece "ugly dolls" for the seven kids in our lives, crocheted my way through my MIL, dad, brother and husband's gifts, developed bath tea bags with lavender and chamomile from our garden, baked a billion cookies, went cross-eyed sewing purses and sachets and skirts and aprons, became incredibly frustrated with watercolors and wasted an hour trying to get a sticker off a picture-frame-glass before finally finding the GooGone... Ha!
But in all that, there is such a sense of accomplishment and happiness as I look over the baskets of gifts that I'm loading into the car today. We didn't go overboard. We were mindful of special treats instead of toss-out crap. I was able to watch Pride & Prejudice and North & South a gazillion times while crafting...
There is nothing wrong with a store-bought gift. It has simply been a luxury this year to make many of our own gifts. And for that I am grateful.
Wishing a Merry Christmas to you and yours,