Christmas with children naturally involves presents. Because I have so many people to feed from about 22nd onwards I try to minimise the last minute Christmas shopping.
Who wants what?
My problem (and maybe you will relate to this too) is that I seem to be the coordination point for the presents. Everyone wants to buy something that others want and so there are lots of lists.
Things are further complicated because of how our family is so spread about geographically. The french grandparents come over by train so it is best if they are not trying to carry lots of presents.
So overall I end up buying many of the presents then running a big spreadsheet to work out who has spent what for whom and how much people owe. It all seems a bit farcical, and it makes me wonder whether it would all work out the same if we just bought our own gifts.
Pondering on this for a bit I realise that I don’t chose same type of gift as if I was buying for myself. When I see it as someone else buying for me, I am more inclined to ask for something that is an indulgence, a treat, something that they would feel pleased to have bought me.
Maybe it feels ok for others to buy us things for pleasure that we wouldn’t necessarily buy for ourselves (shopaholics excluded).
Buy early – and don’t forget yourself
I try to have this all sorted by the end of November. I’m behind this year but close to being done.
Now a side problem is that I get so busy organising everyone else’s presents that I can be inclined to forget my own. I had seen various items of clothing that would be nice but I was so busy with sorting everyone else I keep thinking – I’ll do mine later. Now those clothes are sold out.
So 3 tips if you find yourself as GCC (Gift Coordination Centre)
- Get lists early
- Buy early – whether from the internet or in shops
- And don’t forget about yourself