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  #1  
Old 08-06-2009, 07:50 PM
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A Different Kind of Christmas

I am having very mixed feelings about my side of the family's Christmas this year. The family is changing the ENTIRE way of doing Christmas this year!! Everyone bought everyone a gift. The "tree" took several hours because we opened one present at a time. We happily drug it out as long as possible.

Now they want to draw names...ummm...NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I know many other people do this but it will feel foreign. I am very much a tradition person and we've done it the other way since I WAS BORN!

Why now? Because my brother and his wife are cheap...plain and simple (and they make more money than anyone else in the family!!). They convinced everyone that this is better, cheaper and the money we would've used we can donate to a needy family. Sounds great in theory....I just don't think the latter will happen in the end. If they are looking to save money, why would they give it to needy people if they don't even want to spend it on their own family?!

If we adopt a family for Christmas and provide a tree, trimmings, presents, etc. then I would be happy with the idea. I truly don't think it'll happen.

Another thing, Christmas will be over in less than 30 minutes. One present each, except for the kids.

No months long shopping, no picking out the perfect gift that you know they'll love, no NOTHING!!!

UGH ~
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:34 PM
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Don't let it ruin your Christmas. It's really your choice how you are going to deal with this.

Drawing names can be exciting if the names are kept a secret until Christmas Day.
The gifts really don't matter. It's the people who are with you to celebrate this glorious day that matter not the gifts.

You will find that over the years there will always be adjustments but Christmas is in our hearts and that never changes unless we allow it to change.

I would purpose in my heart to make this the best Christmas ever with great love and appreciation for my family that is there gathered around the tree.

(((((((hugs)))))))))
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Old 08-06-2009, 09:03 PM
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Sorry for your problem....I feel your frustration....happened to me last year with our extened family....my wife and I still did our thing....my mom, dad, and I still did our thing, but everyone else played a dirty santa thing...it was very closed minded to it, but it ended up all right....we spent more time visiting than opening gifts....turned out all right....stand up for what you want, but keep an open mind! it angered me that people were messing with my precious time of year...so i'm pulling for you!
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Old 08-06-2009, 09:30 PM
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Originally Posted by joyful View Post
Don't let it ruin your Christmas. It's really your choice how you are going to deal with this.

Drawing names can be exciting if the names are kept a secret until Christmas Day.
The gifts really don't matter. It's the people who are with you to celebrate this glorious day that matter not the gifts.

You will find that over the years there will always be adjustments but Christmas is in our hearts and that never changes unless we allow it to change.

I would purpose in my heart to make this the best Christmas ever with great love and appreciation for my family that is there gathered around the tree.

(((((((hugs)))))))))
I agree with this.

Our family has been on a budget the last couple of years and we have had the best Christmas ever without many presents involved. I'm sorry everything is changing but hopefully everything will turn out good and you will have a nice Christmas.
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Old 08-06-2009, 10:13 PM
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At first I thought...

...you were talking about one of my favorite CDs - http://www.amazon.com/Different-Kind.../dp/B0000540DM
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Old 08-07-2009, 03:18 AM
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It´s different...but it doesn´t need to be bad....You can still give more...just because everyone else does it...doesn´t mean You gotta go on with.....but as coach said...be open minded....that way You spend less time openin present....but have more time to spend time and talk and dance and sing or whatever You usually do.

I understand the frustration...if anything changes on Christmas over here...I´m not happy at first...but usually things turn out quite good
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Old 08-07-2009, 06:05 AM
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Our family Christmas's have also changed over the years. I have 5 brothers and a sister, between us we have 17 kids, of those 4 are now married and have 6 kids between them. Not everyone in our families are blessed to be able to afford to give generously at Christmas. Even getting everyone together can be a challenge. Two brothers & thier families and 4 nieces and nephews live out in BC and Alberta. My sister and her family live in Vermont. One brother has sold his home and lives in his truck with his wife in an attempt to get out of serious debt.
Things we have done:
*We now set the date for our family Christmas as the Saturday before Christmas every year.(so this year it will be on December 19th)
*Gifts consist of one gift bag or basket per family (eg. I would give each family a gift bag full of homemade jams, cookies , tea towels etc. Other family members would do similar, so I would be giving out 5 to 10 gift bags and would receive, 5 to 10 gifts)
*we also include a game where all names go in a hat and as your name is drawn, you get to open a gag gift, if you like it you keep it, if not you look for one you like to exchange it with. This game with our bunch can go on for quite some time and is really fun.
*supper is always pot luck with everyone bringing their specialties to be enjoyed by all. There is more food than can be eaten, but the guys sure try!
*There is a time of singing Christmas carols...by the way, what does the word "carol" mean anyway?)
*everyone that has the room takes a turn hosting this event, so it is somewhere different every year.


Of course these changes took place over a number of years as the family grew and changed. We tried the name draw thing, the give only to the kids thing, the lets do a turkey dinner thing, even once it was suggested we do our dinner in November (that was axed shortly after the suggestion!) We also have done the "lets give all the money to a place where the needy can be helped" When the "gift bag" thing first started there where also protests. A couple of family members still give indivdual gifts instead of gift bags, but that is ok, they do what makes them feel good. This year it was suggested we do a baking exchange, but I have not heard back from others as to what is happening with that one.

The important thing is that we get together to celebrate the season, have fun and enjoy each others company.
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  #8  
Old 08-07-2009, 07:14 AM
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Call their bluff..! YOU be the initiator and go to The Salvation Army and adopt the family on their behalf... it's win/win for you... a needy family gets a nice Christmas and you get to watch your "cheap" family members eat their own words and have to pony up the cash...

Just for the record, my family has been doing a grab bag thing for years, since we all started getting married and the family got too big... we still buy for the kids (and I always get a little something extra for my one sister because I'm her Godfather), but we draw names and keep it SECRET until Christmas... some of my sibs have gone to elaborate lengths over the years trying to figure out who had who's name... and that can be fun, also.
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Old 08-07-2009, 07:32 AM
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Originally Posted by Christmas-A-Holic View Post
I agree with this.

Our family has been on a budget the last couple of years and we have had the best Christmas ever without many presents involved. I'm sorry everything is changing but hopefully everything will turn out good and you will have a nice Christmas.

Before I moved to Texas, I lived the bachelor life, spending money any way I wanted, I used to go all out at Christmas, buying gifts for my parents and brother and sister and thier kids (5 in all). Then I came here and it all changed, at first I hated it, this Christmas on a budget thing sucked. But my sweety, showed me that you can have a lot of fun at Christmas without a ton of gifts, I still want to give nice gifts, so I concentrate on her, and let her handle the rest of the family.
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Old 08-07-2009, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by Snow-in-Texas View Post
Before I moved to Texas, I lived the bachelor life, spending money any way I wanted, I used to go all out at Christmas, buying gifts for my parents and brother and sister and thier kids (5 in all). Then I came here and it all changed, at first I hated it, this Christmas on a budget thing sucked. But my sweety, showed me that you can have a lot of fun at Christmas without a ton of gifts, I still want to get nice gifts, so I concentrate on her, and let her handle the rest of the family.
Yes! You do want to give me nice gifts but I beg you to not spend much!! Lol..

George has a great idea here! In fact I see lots of good ideas. Changes can be hard when you are use to tradition.

The change that was really hard on me nearly 7 years ago is when my grandma passed away. Thanksgiving and Christmas changed a lot! After a couple of years, I was determined to get back to what we use to do and it's all good now. Nothing to do with gifts but how family split off doing their own thing.

Hope all works for ya Officepro!
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