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Bah Humbug
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30 posts in this topic

Too many commercials.

Too much greed.

Too much focus on spending, spending, spending.

How will kids ever learn to be satisfied with what they have?

Do people really think the secret to happiness is buying more stuff?

People fighting at the mall over things that won't really make their lives better.

Has everyone gone crazy?

I can't wait until it's over.

Love your friends and family - real love doesn't come from a store.

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in my household BLACK FRIDAY= BUY NOTHING DAY, we don't leave the hosue and just hang out and do our homework.

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there was a 70s Sci Fi movie where they celebrated "Commerce day" I think we're getting darn close to that.

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It used to bother me, but now I just don't participate. Don't watch much tv, and what I do is tivo'ed so I don't have to watch commercials. (Not all products are bad. :) ) Only go out shopping for stuff I've already said "hey, I need this", like any other time of year. So, other than the snow this morning (!?! :huh::blink::o:blink::huh: ?!?) it doesn't have to be a lot different. Definitely helped me appreciate the whole thing a bit more. (Oh, I admit to taking advantage of loss leaders if they're for something I've been waiting to get for a while. :P )

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We have limited our gift giving to $50.00 a kid (that includes our three kids-in-law ;) ), and around $25.00 for grandkids (they're all 6 and under and don't expect more anyway, since they haven't figured out the worth of money yet). That way we don't spend a fortune (even though it adds up, too, with eight kids and six grandkids).

I do most of my shopping online, since I don't have the energy for shopping at the mall (besides the fact that I can't do crowds very well). I like Amazon, Chapters and e-Bay, as well as Landsend and LLBean, for some things Sears. And I've picked up little things for stocking stuffers here and there all year (I hope I'll be able to find them all :blink: ).

So, there will be no last minute shopping for me. It will be stressful enough for me as it is. We were going to have Christmas this year in the camp my second daughter was a director in, all sleeping in one cabin and cooking and eating in the dining hall/kitchen (no kids in the camp during holidays, it's a school camp). But because suddenly my son-in-law got himself a job elsewhere, they're moving on December 16th, a 4 1/2 hour drive away from us south-west. And since our oldest daughter is a 5 1/2 hour drive north-east, now Christmas will have to be at our house.

So, there'll be 11 extra people (including our second-youngest daughter's boyfriend) camping out at our house for several days from the Thursday before Christmas until Christmas Eve. That's when they'll all move on to their respective homes/parent-in-law's homes.

And I'll need about three weeks to recover. At least. Even though it will be nice to see them all, I dread it, it is too stressful for me, and would be even if I would be well physically. My autistic side is getting more pronounced, and I prefer being completely alone. 15 people in one not very large house for four days is a far cry from being alone. :blink:

So, I can't wait for it to be over as well. I'd prefer to be by myself and thinking about the true meaning of Christmas, rather than having to be pleasant around too many people. Even though I love all those people, and the children are very sweet, it will be very overwhelming.

There, at least I can say it here, I obviously can't say that to my family.

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What disgusts me the most, is that they had christmas crap out in the stores before Halloween. It's making me more and more into a scrooge. It's like everyone lives the whole year counting down to Christmas. <_<

-Laurie

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I am a floral designer.... silks.... so talk about being sick of Christmas.... I have been living, sleeping and eating Christmas (I wonder if it is gluten-free) since October. I don't even enjoy decorating our home anymore and I have a husband who LOVES Christmas...the decorations and the lights. BAH HUMBUG!!!!!! Right now he is outside putting up holiday decorations. I am in the house with a stomach ache. I think my MIL glutened my food (on accident). No one seems to think that cross contamination is a factor. She brought over some kind of sticky, sweet, gluten filled pastry this a.m. and used my cutting board where I was fixing lunch. I should have known better but I thought maybe this time, I won't get glutened..... ANYWAY. working retail certainly makes it a challenge to remember what this season is all about!!!!

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bah humbug too... I have been so worried that I won't even be able to do ANYTHING for my daughter for Christmas because my income has been so much less since losing my job in March... She's a great kid and I don't want to spoil her, but I would like to get her some new clothes and maybe even an easy bake oven so she can make gluten-free creations all on her own. I spent most of yesterday on the couch crying because I'm so broke. Today was better... I had an unexpected client today and after she paid for her massage, she gave my daughter 10 dollars for being so quiet and good while I was working. So I took her to Dollar Tree and Chick Fil A afterwards for some waffle fries and an Ice Dream cup... she even got a balloon...

but I agree Christmas has gotten way to commercialized and I refuse to get sucked into it all. Even when I could afford more, I didn't go crazy with shopping for everybody on some stupid list. I just get things for people when I find something I think they would really like and it means something. Otherwise, I just make fudge and give it away. (Naturally gluten-free!)

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Debbie, you do have a point, and that's why I make an effort, for the kids. The only reason I bother with a Christmas tree is really, because the little grandchildren will look at it like it's the most wonderful thing they've ever seen. Seeing the wonder in their eyes is worth it.

My daughter will do a lot of crafts with her kids (and I always used to do the same thing when my kids were small). Presents really are secondary to me (other than the ones I give away, I am looking forward to seeing the little one's faces when opening the little gifts I got them). My second daughter asked me yesterday what I wanted for Christmas, and I am still thinking about it............I have no idea what to tell her, I hadn't given it a thought.

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My Humbug is not for all of Christmas, but for the commercialization and the feeling that only by buying people everything they want can you be a good little consumer. My husband seems to feel that you show love by buying things, and the more you buy the more you prove your love. And that's a substitute for actually doing anything like spending time with his kids or doing things with them. He just won't accept the connection between the hundred or so gifts he gives the two of them at Christmas (I'm not kidding, I counted over a hundred packages last year not counting stockings and what they got from grandparents) and their inability to manage all of that crap stuffed into their tiny rooms. And the tacky decorations - I love Christmas lights, but the fake deer and inflatable stuff - why does anyone need this? Who is impressed by this? Imagine that money donated to a local food bank. Imagine if half of what my husband spent on gifts went into a college fund. Imagine if people could be thrilled with a plate of homemade cookies or a handknit sweater. To me, any homemade gift contains more thought and more love than anything you could find at a mall. But the culture trains us to expect more. I could stand maybe two weeks of hoopla right before Dec. 25th, but with the commercials for toys overtaking the commercials for cereal and fast food on Cartoon Network starting around September and escalating feverishly, and the music in stores, and the ads for things you only see right before Christmas (when do you ever see an ad for an electric shaver, Chia Pet, or Monopoly game the rest of the year?), and the extra pounds of paper in my newspaper to advertise sales, and the extra jeweler's ads on the radio, there's just no escaping it for months. I remember vividly all of my toys from childhood because I had so few that I played with each a lot. My kids have so much stuff they might think about each toy a few times a year, but they can't bear to part with any of it. I just wish for simpler times when people expected and were content with less. Okay, that's today's rant.

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Ah, your rant clarified what you really meant. And I wholeheartedly agree. My oldest daughter has a policy that every time her children get a new toy, they have to choose one to give away. She has five children, and feels that otherwise they get greedy, and her house will be overrun by toys. Maybe you will need to do something like that, too.

My husband won't buy the kids anything if he can help it, and he also spends precious little time with them. He'll work at the local youth center and spend time with those kids, but not with his own kids and grandkids (that wouldn't get him recognition as this 'pillar of the community', of course).

The commercialism is one of the reasons I stay out of the stores around Christmas time if I can help it. Who needs it.

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I am a floral designer.... silks.... so talk about being sick of Christmas.... I have been living, sleeping and eating Christmas (I wonder if it is gluten-free) since October. I don't even enjoy decorating our home anymore and I have a husband who LOVES Christmas...the decorations and the lights. BAH HUMBUG!!!!!! Right now he is outside putting up holiday decorations. I am in the house with a stomach ache. I think my MIL glutened my food (on accident). No one seems to think that cross contamination is a factor. She brought over some kind of sticky, sweet, gluten filled pastry this a.m. and used my cutting board where I was fixing lunch. I should have known better but I thought maybe this time, I won't get glutened..... ANYWAY. working retail certainly makes it a challenge to remember what this season is all about!!!!

I used to be a floral designer. I know exactly what you mean. Valentine's day, mother's day, I do not miss those days at all LOL.

I particularly DO NOT MISS the tree sap on my hands from the tree greens! Or the stupid christmas carols on repeat of the same 3 c.d.s. I can't wear rubber gloves, I'm allergic.

-Laurie

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I thoroughly enjoy the sights and smells of the CHRISTMAS season. However, I totally agree that putting Christmas items out before Halloween is both ridiculous and disgusting. And somehow in between, Thanksgiving is lost. I guess because retailers can't make any money off of it, except on food items. I enjoy shopping for my family for the most part but don't consider myself extravagant. It is quite appalling what has happened over the Playstation 3's. Greed has taken over people's senses. It does make me sad when I hear people say that they wish it Christmas was over and they'd like to forget about it altogether. <_<

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The magic is there if you make the effort....

I agree but it does get harder each year. Early Thanksgiving morning, I turned on the car radio and the first song was, Grandma got run over by a reindeer. That killed the magic for this holiday season.

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Turn off the TV, skip the local newspaper, listen to public radio. Last year I decided that everyone I know already has too much stuff, so I gave a donation to Heifer international and sent everyone a lovely email explaining that their Christmas gift is giving several families somewhere in Africa a future.

I'm hoping that other members of my family will do the same thing this year.

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Oh I just love this thread! When we left town on Wed. am, several homes in our SD had their weaths up on each window, well they were up at least by Sunday night actually. I thought, can you let me have at least Thanksgiving without haveing to see Christmas decor? Skip to Thanksgiving morning when my nephew (his play room is full of toys plus basement has more) is dying to open a gift since we all brought their gifts with us as is tradition - no shipping cost that way. His parnets go up and find some gift from his b-day that was a toy still in the plastic, wrapped it and told the kid his grandparents gave it to him. I saw the 5yo storm upstairs and knew he was very unhappy but I hadn't heard what happened so my SIL told me. He opened the gift, yelled 'I think I already have this one' (transformer) and ran upstairs to find out. His punishment was sitting in his room comtemplating his behavior and when it was time to eat, he opted not to eat Thanksgiving dinner with us. Some other grandparents stopped by after dinner to say hi and they were told they could not see the child since he'd been so bad....... Can you imagine what such a child will be like when he's 15? And you can't blame the kid since it's the parents giving him a hundred toys throughout the year that made him this way. I think I'll follow jegstars example next year and give those kids a note that explains how we gave to needy children that otherwise would not have anything on Christmas morning.

DH has never enjoyed Christmas as an adult. He doesn't want to exchange gifts with in-laws (mine or his) since we all have any and everything we need or want and he'd rather give to charity. We do that too, but we still give gifts to everyone as well. I think next year I'll agree to not give to our siblings gifts and see how that goes over. My sister will be fine with that but DH's probably won't be. It's just too much stuff and people are starving to death every day. I think we can enjoy Christmas more if we get back to what the season is really celebrating. The only people I know who aren't stressed at Christmas are my agnostic friends. That's pretty sad I think.

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like I said earlier, I refuse to get sucked into the insanity. As if I had the money to do anything anyway... I haven't even contemplated getting the Christmas decorations out of the attic yet. It's not even Dec. 1st. My mom already has her tree up.

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I agree with the decorations at Halloween being a wee bit too soon. My personal Christmas decorating policy is one my kids disagree with, because they LOVE the Christmas tree. It's this: No Christmas decorations go up until AFTER Uncle Toby's birthday Dec. 9th. We put up a tree which the kids decorate, and have a few little ceramic snowmen type of things and stockings. It all comes down Jan. 1st or 2nd.

We have a spending limit and the adult brothers/sisters no longer exchange gifts and other than our very young cousins, we don't have our kids exchange with cousins either. We usually have about 15 people for Christmas dinner and each of the kids will bring a new game or something for everyone to share after dinner. Last year my MIL bought each of her kids/kids-in-law two chickens and a goat in a small community in Africa. I can't remember the name of the organization, but I love that idea. I have everything that I need so there's no point getting me something I don't need.

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Last year in my dh's extended family we bought 3 goats. We all found pictures of goats online, printed them out and put them in cards and tried to figure out who's goat was better looking. The kids all got way too much, something I'm trying to downplay, but at least the adults in my dh's family have decided that we all have enough. I told my kids and hubby that I'd be happy with a goat for a truly needy person and a cheese/carrot grater (mine is rusty and yucky).

We still try to make Christmas special, without all the commercialization. Even my girls, at 15 and 13 are looking forward to driving around looking at Christmas lights (hot cocoa in thermoses), making a gluten-free gingerbread house, the school and church Christmas programs, watching Christmas videos, driving to the mountains to go sledding and having no school! We get each child (also have boys ages 11 and 9) one big thing (about $25 max.) that they will like, some clothes and a stocking full of little gifts and candy. They see that thier cousins and friends get way more, but they seem to understand that expensive gifts aren't our focus. We also choose a child from the "Angel Tree" at church (for children whose parents are in prison) and also choose gifts to buy for an "Adopt-a-Family" family from our school.

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Last year the kids and I started a new tradition. We love Halloween so much, we decided we would have a "Nightmare Before Christmas" themed christmas. We have lovely sally and Jack stockings. For the tree we put fake cobwebs with purple and oarnge lights. We also have purple and oarnge ornaments and of course a nice set of Nightmare Before x-mas ornaments. (we are going to make some this year, by buying plain ones and drawing the glue on in fun shapes and dipping in different colored glitter). I made black bows for the tree also.

For the mantel I bought a string of jack lights and spider garland from halloween. I am going to sew a black tree skirt and draw with glue a spider web then sprinkle silver glitter on it. It will look like a web surronding the treee.

It has managed to put a little fun back into christmas. It is fun for us, looking for alternative decorations and makes the season a little more bearable. And if the stores are going to make me think about christmas before halloween, then I will just buy halloween decorations for christmas. LOL :P

I love the livestock donation idea, think I might have to do that. Especially for my niece that is an ungrateful brat, who doesn't deserve coal. The adults will love that there gifts would be to a family that could use the help.

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Christmas has turned into the most idiotic holiday around. The only reason I like this stupid holiday is because I get time off from work. I give my son some gifts and that is it. My girlfriend and I can afford whatever we want whenever we want so we just get some token gift for each other and that is it. My parents don't want or need anything except to see their grandson. My mom likes to get us some gifts but nothing extravegant. My ex-wife and her family were of the more gifts=more love persuasion and I am glad I don't have to deal with that insanity anymore. I would love to see everyone wake up and walk out of the stores and not buy anything for anybody at Christmas anymore. Sure the economy would take a dive but for some reason I think we would ultimately be better off in the long run. BAH HUMBUG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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I'm going to have to agree with Debbie. :D

I think Christmas is the best time of the year. I just can't help it. :) Christmas was such a special time in our family...my parents instilled in us the 'magic' and true meaning of Christmas...we are all grown now, and our significant others think it is the greatest thing and love Christmas at my parents house.

I pick and choose:

I love Christmas music but hate songs like "grandma got ran over by a reindeer" so I only listen to my Christmas CDs, mainly with Christmas instrumental tracks.

I do love gift giving: getting special things that mean something to each other. We have a tradition to give an ornament each year, usually it represents something that person did in the past year. Sometimes they are real ornaments, sometimes they are tiny toys that we 'rig' to be an ornament. My Christmas tree ornaments represent all of our lives.

But, the first thing I think of with Christmas traditions is not the gifts I have gotten, but it is going to Christmas Eve service with my husband, parents, grandma, siblings, and now, my sweet nieces. Sitting next to my grandma and putting my head on her shoulder during the service means so much to me. Hanging out Christmas Eve, around the Christmas tree....it is very rare our whole family is together.

So while all the yuckiness IS out there....I just block it out and make it special for my family and I.

But, I respect all of your bah humbugs and agree with many of your points. :) But I just had to share!

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I think the commercialization is definately out of control but it will continue to be that way as long as society permits it. Though how each person celebrates is totally within their control. My kids get 3 presents at Christmas (if it was good enough for Jesus, it's good enough for them!) and last year they purchased goats, pigs and chickens through World Vision for their grandparents and aunts and uncles. This was their idea and it was their money. World Vision uses the money to purchase the animals for impoverished communities around the world. We also fill several shoe boxes for the Operation Christmas program and try to participate in the Angel Tree. This is not said to brag, I know of many people who do so much, much more-just trying to say that I believe that Christmas is more what you put into it than the commercialization.

Sorry, I just re-read my post and wanted to say that I didn't mean for this to sound "preachy" or anything. Mainly, just that I agree that all the commercial stuff is way way out of hand and that I am sad if you feel bah humbug.

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for christmas this year we are doing we know what we are getting so we know we like what we are getting. my mom is letting us order what we want from the stores we want, she will wrap it up and put it under the tree but we know what we are getting, it's a good way to know what we are getting and give what people want and we kow they will like it.

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clbevilacqua,

i don't think your post came across as preachy...I think it exemplifies what the Christmas season, to me (not everyone), should be about.

we better leave otherwise we aren't going to have friends :P

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