The Big Holiday Catch Up

It’s that time of the year when we find ourselves cramping our schedule with get-togethers. In a way I view it as a blessing having friends from different sets of interests and from different times in my life. The bonds forged is still there and in some groups, new people were added to the mix to nourish the relationship. It is funny that we have 11 months in one year to do this yet we all find the necessity and push to finally do it when December comes. It doesn’t matter that it’s a hectic month to begin with – less workdays therefore more work to squeeze within business days, horrendous holiday traffic jam, gift-shopping – yet we still do it on an annual basis: furiously find common dates and mutually convenient locations to finally hangout even just for a short time. I wonder if friends ever said to each other, “Next year, let us not do it this way! Let us plan way ahead!” and actually went with that plan. Maybe it did happen to others but certainly not in my groups. I still love all of them so I really don’t mind at all. Regardless if my sleep has shortened to less than six hours a night which the mid-thirties in me really struggles with already.

img_9634One other thing I noticed is how delayed Christmas gift shopping for friends and godchildren was, not just with me but with many of my close friends. Is it the schedule? Finances? Both? Much like shopping for back to school supplies, we cannot entirely presume that people do last –minute shopping because they don’t plan well or they like to procrastinate. Sometimes – or in this economy, most times – it could be because the capacity to buy comes around the same time as well. As Miss Universe said, teach yourself the silver lining in this situation; the desire to give is still alive!

However, we really cannot discount the convenience of planning for it months ahead. I know someone who takes advantage of mall sales to buy gifts in toy stores, way before December. A toy or two, and before you know it, you have your godchildren covered, gifts-wise. It may also help to do the same when you travel. Last year we went to Guam for a long weekend and found great items at reasonable prices in Macy’s and GPO mostly for kids aka godchildren and young nieces and nephews. That was November; so by the time December came we only had to buy for a few adult friends. So yeah, planning and timing are key.

When you find yourself minding the same kind of “happy dilemma”, that is good! Sharing your presence and your affection through gifts are sufficient manifestations of generosity. You may not be able to meet everyone or give everyone gifts because you have limitations (and frankly you really do not have to) but when you are in the midst of this December holiday craziness, then perhaps that is good enough. Happy holidays, everyone!

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