Twenty-Four Shopping Days Until Christmas!
The countdown to Christmas is on, but for once, I’m not panicking. I am not a shopper. I know some people love it, but I am the kind of person who would rather get a root canal than go shopping. I have no idea what to buy for anyone, and I hate wandering around trying to make decisions. So why am I not panicking about only having twenty-four shopping days until Christmas? Go ahead and call me the Grinch, but I prefer to phrase it more positively. I have simplified my Christmas.
My adult kids are attempting to limit the clutter in their homes. I respect (and envy) that approach, so we slip a little cash in their stocking. It may seem cold, but they seem happy to have money they can use as they see fit. They don’t need another candle or coffee mug. My close friends and I agreed years ago that we would go to dinner together instead of buying each other more “things.” We’re all at the stage in life where we are trying to get rid of things, not accumulate more!
That brings me to my grandchildren, the joys of my life. What kind of grandmother doesn’t shower her grandchildren with mounds of toys on Christmas? That would be me. There are a couple of reasons I abstain from going overboard with gifts for them. Instead of focusing on gifts at Christmas, I like to concentrate on enjoying activities together. I love taking them to the Christmas Parade, visiting Utica Square to look at the decorations, and decorating a less-than-perfect gingerbread house. And then back to the selfish reason for limiting gifts, I hate shopping! But don’t waste your sympathy on my grandkids. I may be a Grinch about presents, but with four sets of adoring grandparents, my grandkids have plenty of everything!
In past years, I have done the three gift Christmas for my grandkids. One gift for the body, one for the mind, and one for the soul. This year, because I like to shop locally owned stores, I went to Kiddlestix and managed to get it all done in an hour! The employees there are knowledgeable and helpful regarding kids’ gifts, and a big bonus is the complimentary gift wrapping on purchases! If you’re shopping for books (and what is Christmas without books?!), don’t forget Magic City Books in downtown Tulsa! Magic City is an independently owned, non-profit bookstore with books for kids and adults.
With my shopping done, I have decided to add one more gift to my grandkids’ list. This fourth thing on the list is a present I don’t need to buy, and I think it’s going to be my favorite. It’s the gift of an experience. Gifts are soon discarded and forgotten, but it’s the experiences and time together we treasure. My youngest grandchild will be turning fourteen months soon, and she has yet to spend the night with us, so her gift will be a sleepover without her brother. I plan to have Christmas cookies for her to decorate, and we’ll do a simple Christmas craft. Mostly it will be the experience of grandparents’ attention that she doesn’t have to share. Her big brother Callister is four. I am thinking I may get up the nerve to take him to the Nutcracker Ballet. What do you think? Is he too young? I started taking my kids when they were three, but they were a little more passive than my grandson. He helped me decorate my house for Christmas last weekend, and he was fascinated with the Nutcracker collection. The other choice is a trip to the Air and Space Museum with lunch at White River Fish Market. I have a feeling that might suit his energy level better, and he’s been asking to try seafood.
The main point is spending time together and experiencing something new. There are so many opportunities for experiences in Tulsa. Check out the TulsaKids list of Twenty Things to do in Tulsa Over Winter Break for some great ideas! There are only twenty-four shopping days left until Chirstmas, or you could forget the shopping completely and give an experience. Experiences and time with my grandchildren almost seem like a selfish present, doesn’t it? I may end up having more fun than they do, but I think I deserve a gift. I’m not a total Grinch after all!