In the past couple of days....I have been pondering a few posts from Red over at Girl With The Red Balloon. She wrote about not sending Christmas Cards, and not using fancy wrapping.
I did toy with the idea of not doing cards...but decided that I LIKE getting them. And I think that the people I send them to like getting them too. At the point where I don't enjoy it anymore....it will go. But for now, it stays. While at a family party this weekend, I saw they had framed a card from a few years ago of the kids....it was very sweet.
Wrapping gifts....yes, I know that wrapping paper is wasteful. And it isn't about the packaging. But I would venture a guess that if you had 2 boxes of identical shape and size, and one was wrapped in newspaper, and one in wrapping paper....most people would say that the wrapping paper is prettier.
And as a note on newspaper....most people I know don't even GET the paper anymore....so where are all these people getting newspaper to wrap with??
But here is the thing that sort of struck me yesterday while the family party.....someone made a comment how they love the food at the party (which is the same menu each year)....because it is something that they look forward to...it is traditional....
We learn alot from our upbringing, especially when it comes to values, what you find important, how to handle situations....but in my case, I seem to have inherited every recessive trait from my parents, because as I get older, I am veering more and more from them.
Let me set the scene for you.....gifts were hastily wrapped minutes before presentation. No traditional foods or events for ANYTHING (not holiday, birthday, etc). House was comfortable, but no effort to make it feel like a HOME, or goodness forbid we do anything SPECIAL for holiday. And holiday cards....NEVER with pictures....and if they were sent, it was signed "Mr. and Mrs. John Smith, and children." Warm and fuzzy, that wasn't my parents...formal and cold....that is closer to my upbringing.
But all of this extra stuff IS important to me. I want my kids to remember the house being decorated and how we did it as a family. I want them to have a collection of the holiday cards we sent out (I always keep one for each child) and they can see how they changed. I want them to feel special when they see their gifts wrapped up with ribbons and bows....
I want them to see how the extra effort not only makes someone else feel special, but also makes us feel happy to do it for others. I want them to remember all of this. I know that it is what is inside that counts, and that all the jazzy stuff doesn't replace core value....but think that they get alot out of it....I know that I do.
So I budget in for holiday cards and wrapping paper....for new decorations, and for all the trimmings. I budget in not only money, but TIME. Time to make cookies with them. Time to wrap the gifts to the 9's. Time to drive through the towns and look at the lights.
It may be wasteful and irresponsible to do all of this....but I like it. I want to do it. And that is that.