It’s the thought that counts but I want presents.
MONDAY! O.K., we need to go through our check list. Back to school? Check. Jewish holidays? Check. Columbus Day? Check. Halloween? Check. Veterans Day? Check. Thanksgiving? Check. So that’s it? Yep. We made it? Yes we did! Can we say it now? Go ahead! Oh my God, Christmas is coming!!! (cough, cough) Sorry about that. We wait all year for this time and we tend to get a little excited. We have mentioned that we are the crazy Christmas freaks who get their shopping done before Columbus Day and measure the season by the amount of lights our ginormous tree has. The gifts, which we adore, are really secondary. Besides, isn’t it the thought that counts?
Lee says: I love this time of year. As a child, I remember seeing everything with a shimmer and there was a constant strum of excitement running through everything around this time of year. Even today I swear that the lights shine a little brighter and the voices in my head hum a Christmas Carol. Most of my job is done by November since I am the Gift Captain which also includes the rank of Wrapping Admiral. By the time the tree is trimmed, I am ready to place most, if not all, of the gifts under the tree. Then I can concentrate on the important things like telling Paul to stop putting more lights outside. Like telling Paul that our house looks like Santa and his Elves had an orgy on the front lawn. Like telling Paul that he can’t touch the presents or Santa will take them away.
When it comes to gift giving, we have never been extravagant. I know of people who spend hundreds of dollars for gifts for their children and significant others that, at the end of the day, end in a pile only to be put away or used occasionally. Does the extravagance add the specialness or thoughtfulness of the gift? I don’t think so. For me, I love it when Paul get’s me something functional yet slightly off to the left of ordinary. I like when he thinks of ways to making my life easier.
When I choose gifts for him, I think of the same things. I think of things that would bring him happiness. I tend to get him books (which is always appropriate in our relationship). I get him some fun books then I get him the kind of book that makes you scratch your head to remind him that he is brilliant and knowing useless facts about the freezing point of an average house fly is fun but not mind expanding. I like choosing one gift that is just completely something he would never expect. Last year it was a magnetic bracelet thing that pro golfers wear for body aches because he has a bad back. He swore for days that his arm was hot and he felt that it was working. Almost a year later, he still wears it but I am not sure whether it’s because he thinks it’s cool and I gave it to him or because it works.
Regardless, I am choosing his gifts carefully this year. We have had an amazing ride this year with the release of our book (Dysaffirmations: Because this kind of stupid takes work) and the growth of our website and brand (MomTV, Goddard Radio). We are blessed. Perhaps this year I’ll spring for a fur sink or gas powered turtle neck sweater. Nah. Books and toys sound better.
Paul says: I like toys. I am the first to acknowledge that my inner child’s age topped out at 7 ½. I also like books because I read. I like clothes even if I try to live a life where I never need to wear them. Let’s face it, I like the idea that someone would think enough about me to buy me a gift. So I shake the presents, kind of fondle them a little, brush my hand lightly over the wrapping as I try to discern their essence. This is the spirit of Christmas for me. It really is the thought that counts.
(If you want to send a present to me and, thus, have your thought count, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you the address for a secure and grateful PO Box.)