I just realized, last year I apparently failed to write my annual “Humbug” post in which I emphasize that I’m not planning to buy Christmas presents for people and don’t expect them to buy me any. Mea culpa.
My reasons each year have varied (always revolving around being broke!) but this year, I think I have a pretty good one.
Yes, even more so than my 2011 post about the sticker-shock of moving to and living in NYC being financially crippling, this year I’m almost entirely foregoing the expensive tradition of buying things for my family and friends. And as I said, it’s for a good reason: we’ve got a wedding to pay for in August, and I’m trying like mad to continue reminding myself of that.
If the holiday spirit moves you and you see some trinket that makes you think fondly of me, I won’t feign outrage if you choose to give me a gift. And hell, I never manage to stick to this pledge each year entirely anyway… But any gifts purchased will be because something was just too perfectly you for me not to buy, and would likely be the kind of thing I’d do with or without the holiday tradition anyway.
And really, that’s what a gift should be, right? A gesture of affection spurred by something making you think of the recipient… not a grudging acquiescence to year-end obligation.