nothing. i am not in the 'christmas spirit.' why? you may ask- it's the season. well, no, it really isn't. not yet. the current incarnation of the yule season is a 20th century invention based on greed and consumerism. it's interesting to watch the herds of sheeple filing into the stores like they are barns. we are so conditioned to shop, shop, shop to make our season bright that it's little wonder folks are so crabby this time of year. and spare me the whole 'war on christmas' bullshit- jesus was born on one day- not the whole month. now, that would be a miracle.
i had a meltdown over the whole sending of gifts thing this year because it really smacks against what i believe. the whole obligatory gift thing negates the meaning of gift giving. it has made me really take stock of my life, my relationships with people and my belief system. this season is for family time and feasting and relationships. the gifts are incidental to the whole thing. they have replaced what is really important. when we remember our favorite memories, they tend to be one favorite gift or the delicious pie aunt fay made- not a treeful of gifts that get opened and tossed aside. kids don't keep count of how many they get- parents do. kids remember the 'red rider bee bee guns' or the polly prissy pants doll they got from santa.
gifts should be given because the giver has put thought into the gift and believes that the recipient would like it or could use it. and they should be given in august and march and whenever- not saved for one time of year only. ultimately, i made the decision that this is really the last year i participate in the consumer driven, corporate conditioned shop fest that is the american christmas dream. next year- if folks insist on gifting- they can make a donation in my name to the national arbor day foundation.