This is the theme running through my head right now, as I make lists, tick lists, write more lists, tick more, find a list written two weeks ago with something on it that I haven’t ticked yet, remember three more things I need to buy.
I love giving presents to people I care about. They are a token of love and appreciation. We take people for granted far too much in the daily run of things, so it’s nice to give something that will bring a smile or a smidge of delight.
At this stage of Advent though, I begin to wonder whether we are barking up the right Christmas tree. With a couple of exceptions I’m giving to people who already have a lot of stuff. Yes my gift will be new but it won’t be a necessity.
The Dean of Gloucester was on the radio the other day being quite political, quite obviously put out that the Government is failing in its duty to the poor and needy. He said that in this day and age, it should not be necessary to have a food collection point in the Cathedral. But he urged people to donate to provide for those who have almost nothing this Christmas.
So while I’m melting the bank card with one hand, I’m going to give some food to the collection. I have bought cards in aid of a local hospice which I know does excellent work. I am giving a load of unwanted stuff to the hospice to sell which will help someone, somewhere but I am still caught right in the centre of a maelstrom of Christmas commercialism.
We have our first grand-child visiting this Christmas so it will be brilliant. A lot of people are asking me “Have you bought her Monty, the John Lewis penguin?”
Well actually no, I haven’t. Because she doesn’t understand or know about Monty and probably never will and because even I am not falling prey to the cuteness of a monstrously over-priced toy penguin.
I can be a bit of a rebel at Christmas. One year, we had cheese and grapes instead of a turkey for Christmas lunch. It was great but lacked… er… hot turkey and to be honest, Emmenthal is no substitute for pigs in blankets.
Don’t tell the family, but next year I’m going to propose that we all swap presents bought from charity shops.