Is anyone else really rubbish at asking for gifts for Christmas?
Like, I don’t need anything. Seriously. Nothing at all. Well, nothing that jumps out at me immediately or that I wouldn’t or couldn’t buy myself right now online and have with me by Tuesday. Within (budgetary) reason.
Asking for things like perfume when I could just nip out and pick up a bottle if I really needed it enough.
Or scrambling through my brains to think ‘oh maybe a new pair of stud earrings’ when the four holes in my ears are already filled, albeit not very fancily at the mo.
I’m struggling this year to know what to say when kind family members ask what i’d like. Just a nice time really. No, really. Fun and games and food. Movies and meeting up with friends. Walks.
Don’t get me wrong, we ‘could do’ with some new bed linen. I ‘could do’ with a new winter coat. But those things aren’t urgent or anything I’ve placed any importance on of late, so why would I now?
I just think that if someone asks you what you want and you literally have to somehow survive your way through the Upside Down part of your brain to have any idea of what to say, then do you want or need anything at all?
Hhmmm want or need. Need is different isn’t it. Need is about something needing replacing maybe, or something that you don’t have that will make life easier or more functional.
Want is all about desire. Maybe a bit more short termist. It’ll give you an instant hit of something amazing in the pit of your stomach. Then it passes until the next craving. But maybe that’s ok at Christmas? Who has the answers?
My side of the family are doing £15 Secret Santa again this year. Buying for one person at a max budget. Not because pennies are tight but rather it adds an element of surprise and challenge. Picking that name out of the hat and focusing all ideas on that one special person who you want to spend that £15 so carefully on. Because that’s the only prezzie they’ll get. It makes you think more, possibly makes you more creative in some way.
It used to actually annoy me when my gorgeous mum used to say ‘oh nothing, just a bunch of flowers’ when I’d ask what she wanted for her birthday. That couldn’t be it! What about a new handbag for Pete’s sake? Every woman wants/needs a new handbag right? I’d sit there and press her for an answer that i’d be satisfied with before adding to her list with my own ideas until I’d spent what I would deem an appropriate amount for such a wonderful mum.
Perhaps I’m extremely lucky to feel this way. That I don’t need or want anything in particular when there are so many people who fall into the need category so desperately.
However, I always end up coming up with some sort of list though. Because that’s the expectation. That you must want or need something at Christmas. Jewellery, skincare, books are the usual suspects. And yes it is nice to receive them but, I don’t know, is that the point? To ask for something and to get it? Something within that process feels lacking to me. Void of something.
And here’s another thing. God, do I bloody love a list. Maybe that’s what I need. More notepads. I list something everyday. I either add to my life admin to do list, or make a note of what’s running out in the fridge. Or remind myself of Rupert the Sausage Dog’s medications that he needs. I list. And I list well. So what the hell is wrong with me when it comes to the Christmas prezzie wish list?
I love this time of year when booklets from the likes of Rocket St George or Cox and Cox adorn the doormat. I rifle through them for ideas for other people, regardless of what I think they might need or want. One little unexpected gift could mean so much more than a big tick next to something on a list they submitted which they shook their brains into action to come up with under pressure.
One year, before we started the family Secret Santa tradish, my mum and dad’s gifts to eachother really made me smile. They chose eachother a onesie! A snuggly animal themed onesie. I mean, no one was more shocked than me that they even knew what a onesie was, but the thought of them sitting on their sofas dressed as farmyard animals while tucking into mince pies and twiglets really tickled me. That’s the spirit!
One thing I think I do need and value every year (well since last year when it first started) is an end of year minibreak with the hubs and dog. Yep, Mariah had it right all along. Last year we took off to Suffolk for 2 nights to see in the new year and stumbled upon Aldeburgh which was totally unplanned and never heard of. And we loved it. I’d made a veggie cottage pie to take down with us as we were self catering, plus a few bottles of wine. We packed only comfy clothes and dropped anchor in our little bolthole in the country with a new boxset queued up. We explored Aldeburgh on a sunny but freezing New Years Day, spotting seals and eating chips out of paper. That’s the kind of ‘stuff’ I need. Or want. Time and a change of scene, no matter how short or far. Time together before another year kicks in. I certainly value experiences over things any day of the week.
This blog has come about as an hour ago I started writing my list and it made me a bit stressed. Am I asking for the right things? I don’t want to waste this opportunity! Do I really need that? What else do I want? And it became completely unenjoyable. So I just stopped.
But I’ll probably need to keep thinking so that I don’t sound ridiculous or annoy people who need to know my wishlist before the last delivery dates loom. Or is this the year to just stick to ‘I don’t mind, nothing really I need’ and just see what happens? You run the risk of people really wasting their hard earned then though don’t you.
What do you all do? Is it easy for you to think up a list? Is there something wrong with me? Help.
Christmas is probably the time of year where everything excites me. The decorations, the lights, the food, the time off to spend time with loved ones, the movies, the warmth and the cold. I love it, always have. And it really used to heavily hinge on the prezzie thing. The stocking was THE BEST. Small little gifts, more novelty than anything else. THAT was the shit. A collection of randoms that somehow all added up to nothing but pure joy. One after the other, stuffed in tight. Even long after I stopped believing in Father Christmas, I’d still get a stocking. When hubs and I first got together I insisted we did stockings, trying to drag the tradition into my new life phase. Alas, didn’t last. The stocking that is.
Not sure how to end this except for to say that I definitely don’t feel any judgement towards people who have big lists. We’ve been raised to come up with a list of wants since we were tiny, it’s a hard habit to break. And some of us really do need a lot of stuff, using Christmas as the perfect opportunity to get it. But this year I’m stuck. And I’m torn between having to come up with something so that it’s easy on everyone else and just not bothering because it feels like a chore. Neither of which seem in keeping with this time of year.
Something I definitely do want today is a big roast dinner. Possibly with a mince pie for afters. So I’ll just start there then…