Friday, December 19, 2008

A long row to Ho! Ho! Ho!

I am not a scrooge. I love Christmas. I am a virtual theoretical Martha Stewart. I would be happiest living on a remote island off the coast of some cold place with a really good reliable satellite Internet connection telling people how to have a virtual Christmas. I'd have virtual cookies, cinnamon smells, tinsel, shiny things. I'd be very happy.

Instead, I have to prepare for tax season, finish 2008 and all of the payroll, sales tax, bookkeeping & tax work that involves, juggle paychecks and gift buying, clean house, take care of the school... OK I'm going to quit whining.

This morning I'm making an excel spreadsheet of my family Christmas list. I just realized that not only do I need to get gifts, but Mark and Joseph need to get gifts. I know that they (at least Joseph) should get their own gifts. They will. I just want to coordinate the plan.

In the past week or so, on long lunches and quick trips between meetings and when I've had to pick up Mark at school, I've shopped. Some of the gifts are wrapped, and it is to be hoped, labeled. Some are not. I do not know what I have. I don't know what I need to get. I have a Sunday deadline for half the family.

Today, I have to make killer mashed potatoes for the faculty/board family lunch at Carolina School for Inquiry. That's OK. I can do it. I still have cream cheese from when I planned to make four pumpkin cheese cakes and only made one. I hope they aren't moldy. I'd better check.

I have also realized that part of the reason that everyone else I know seems to be wildly wealthier than we are (other than those who make a boatload more money and have no children and therefore ARE wildly wealthier than we are) is that they have credit cards. We don't have any credit cards.

So instead of buying lots of expensive gifts now, I'm going to buy lots of nice but not so expensive gifts now, and then maybe buy something else later when we have more money. Kind of the way we live. Happy April!!!!

Or I could do that radical thing and buy Christmas gifts through out the year and save them. But I've never gotten over the creepy factor of the VERY old Eight is Enough show when the new step-mom found a gift for Tommy (I think) that the dead mom had bought and wrapped before she died. Step-mom gave it to him in a touching bounding (creepy) moment. <<>> I'll have to get over that, or get a credit card.


annie kelleher said...

i never got the buying christmas presents a year in advance either. first of all, i tend to lose things, and secondly, i tend to forget who i buy things for. and yeah, it would be creepy to get a present from a dead person especially when the present's been hanging around long enough for the dad to get over the loss of one wife, then meet and fall in love and marry wife number two. i mean... shouldn't tommy have outgrown whatever it was his mother got him?

Kathy said...

What's with that? How long did it take Mr. Eight is enough to remarry?

One year I bought a present early and hid it, then forgot it for two years. That would have been ok, except it was a calendar.

Kim said...

Skip the credit cards, you are wealthier because you don't have the debt.
I'm one of those creepy people who shop all year. It's genetic. I'm done (for the most part) shopping by thanksgiving and then I coast through December. I have a spot I store presents and it works really well for me.

Kathy said...

I'm trying to get over my superstitions, like: if I get my Christmas shopping done before Thanksgiving, I'll die. Maybe I'll give it a shot this year. Or maybe I'll just by and give presents all year. Or maybe I'll just do the same thing I do every year and go to world market and buy everyone baskets, cool jams, and stuff two days before Christmas. Dang. I hope my in-laws don't read this.