This column originally appeared on 11/23/2014 at The Roses of Prose.
It happens fast, doesn’t it? Summer ends, school starts, Halloween hits and – boom – before we know it we fall into the holiday season.
Parties, shopping, decorating, shopping, tree lighting ceremonies, shopping, family dinners, followed by shopping.
In our family, the transition from Thanksgiving to Christmas isn’t quite as smooth as it could be. In our family, which includes me, my husband, our four children, three in-law children and four grandchildren, we have six birthdays to celebrate before we can fully break out the holiday cheer.
That’s right, three of my four children and three of my four grandchildren made their entrances into this world in the short span of days between these two major holidays. Not all in one year, of course. But, they’re all here now. So, in addition to the hustle and bustle that comes with The Season, we squeeze in an assortment of birthday parties with presents and cake and all the age appropriate trimmings.
I will admit I was the one who started this abundance of birthday-parties-in-the middle-of-the-Christmas-season flurry by giving birth to my second child, a girl, the Saturday after Thanksgiving. A few years later, in mid-December, we welcomed twins, a boy and a girl.
In my defense, the twins weren’t due until sometime in late January, but came early. Still . . .
It seems each of my two daughters inherited their mother’s poor planning of childbirth dates gene. In subsequent years, they followed my lead, having children, all boys, in December. One even made his appearance in the early hours of Christmas Eve.
My only granddaughter was born a couple of weeks before my birthday in the spring. The way birthdays are supposed to happen in order to better space out the giving and/or receiving of gifts.
But I digress.
For someone like me who is not fond of shopping anyway, having so many gifts to buy at one time can present (pun intended because I’m too tired to find another word) a challenge. Don’t get me wrong, I love giving my kids and grandkids gifts, I’m just not that much into fighting the holiday crowds to obtain said gifts to give. Others around the malls and such are in the Ho-Ho-Ho Santa mode when I’m looking for some non-holiday themed items. I’ll admit it, sometimes I simply resort to taking the easy way out.
The older grandkids have my Amazon sign in name and password. They shop, put the items they want/like in my virtual cart. I go in click, click and voila – Instant Presents. They may not get surprises, and they are okay with that because they do get what they want.
Gift cards are another solution to my aversion to shopping, as is the simple inclusion of cash in a card. Anyone who has kids—daughters in particular—knows that unless you’re terribly gifted (oops, there’s another pun) at picking out things they like, will wear or even use, gift cards are a great addition to our shopping portfolios. (While I know a couple of mothers who have the talent to choose acceptable gifts, I’m not one of them.)
One stipulation we sometimes make in the grandkids getting gift cards situation is that Gram and Pa (that’s us) will be the ones to take them shopping. AFTER the holiday frenzy. Like in the middle of January. When the stores are replete with displays for Valentine’s Day, which is just around the corner. Yikes! Here we go again. Before you know it, we’ll be back into Summer.
Until then, speaking of shopping and gifts and holidays and such – starting today and running into Thursday, do I have a sale for you. Actually, fellow Rose of Prose Jannine Gallant and I have a couple of sales for you. A couple of pre-Black Friday sales.
Two, three book anthologies, for the reduced price of 99 cents each.
A high school reunion leads six former classmates to unexpected futures. Join Kate and Tyler; Chantal and Flynn; Chloe and Adam; Amanda and Barry; Blane and Matt; and Bethany and Jake as they become re-acquainted with old friends and rekindle elusive loves.
Saturday in Serendipity
Road to Serendipity
Beat the rush, get your deal ahead of time. Put the turkey in to roast and put your feet up to read. Before you put your head down to forge into the Black Friday brouhaha.
Happy Thanksgiving, Everyone! However you spend it, enjoy this holiday and the others to come.