* This is a guest post written by Daisy from the blog Mothering Heights. Read more about Daisy at the bottom and be sure to check out her blog*
“It’s exactly two months to Christmas, today!”
That’s what my friend said to me a couple of days ago. I’m not going to lie: my heart sank, just a little bit.
Let’s face it: we all felt the pinch last year, right? This recession has hit everyone to some degree, and the added stress of Christmas just isn’t desirable right now.
But where’s the holiday spirit? I hear you say! It’s true, it should be about holiday spirit, yet most of us sit until the early hours working out budgets; trying to figure out where we can find that extra bit of cash to buy that absolutely necessary gift that is imperative to the success of Christmas.
Take. It. Back.
What do you mean “Take it back?” I hear you ask!
Simple, just don’t buy into it. Refuse to be a part of the commercialism of it all. You can either allow yourself to become absorbed by the TV advertisements, the gigantic billboards and the decorations appearing in late October, or you can simply choose to opt out.
Take up a new hobby and make your own gifts. You could knit someone a scarf, sew some dollies, bake some cupcakes, perhaps you’ve always liked the idea of woodwork. Believe me, as someone who spent a two hour textiles lesson trying to thread a needle, and subsequently stitching myself to my trousers, I know how possible it is to overcome that feeling that you can’t do it; to make something you never dreamed of being capable of. (I’m now a knitwear designer slash seamstress…)
Make Christmas 2011 the year for changing your attitude; for changing your children’s attitudes. After all, if you don’t teach them to appreciate the smaller things in life, they’ll just grow up with unrealistic expectations of adulthood. It’s easy to feel like you’re depriving them of a fun childhood; that you’re a mean parent, but isn’t it more important to make sure that they’re aware of financial restrictions? That they have an understanding that their resources are, in fact, finite?
The truth is, you can give your children much more than annoying toys that you’ll inevitably stand on, break, hop around swearing at for a few minutes before finally crashing and burning with the added threat of a broken nose/neck. Give them the ability to appreciate the smaller, more meaningful things in life that happen every day.
Bring the family holiday back, and don’t line the pockets of the big wigs. If you simply must spend this Christmas do it at small, independent retailers to get cash flowing through local communities. That is how to end a recession: we simply stop supporting the huge corporations that exploit us to new and untold levels each holiday. Christmas is about magic, not money. Give yourself a break and enjoy your family this year.
I’ve been hunting for ideas for gifts myself; here are some great ideas that don’t cost the earth!
Cake mixes- in jars! Genius! And the kids will love it.
Here’s a really simple ragdoll tutorial, perfect for budding mamas!
Enjoy Christmas 2011, and have a great new year!
More about Daisy:
I’m Daisy. My real name is Emma, but since my adoring husband-to-be gave me Daisy as a nickname, it’s sort of stuck, I guess! Now the only people who call me Emma are the people I pay my bills do (etc)
I live in the beautiful county of Yorkshire, England with my four girls Bee, Flower, Moomin and *BBP (Pseudonyms, obviously) I adopt a “just in case” mentality when it comes to my babies!
I’m a knitwear designer, baking extraordinaire (okay, I’m not an extraordinaire, but I make pretty darn good food!) a seamstress, writer/blogger, singer for small audiences (generally myself and a kid or two) web/graphic designer, avid reader, lactivist, feminist and a peaceful parent. I babywear, breastfeed, co-sleep, home-educate and generally parent as calmly and naturally as is possible.
P.S. I threw in my pic from my past post on making glitter ornaments. Here is the link to my shameless plug!