Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Maturing Christmas

I am that person you hate- well, most of you that is.  I'm the one that would start playing Christmas music in October, my tree fully lit.  I'd have worked my way through Elf, Polar Express and Frozen with (or without) the kids.  I would have polished off two cartons of eggnog by the first week of November.  But I haven't done these things (except the eggnog part) because I have one of those "opposites attract" marriages, and my husband CANNOT move on to Christmas until Thanksgiving has been fully digested. 

See what I did there?

But even Joel can't prevent the itch inside me to get the gifts all planned out and purchased in advance.  Any mother worth her salt knows that if the gifts aren't relatively even, Christmas afternoon will be less of a celebration and more of a grudge match.  With tinsel.

It should be said that my kids are lucky.  Even though I flat out refuse to purchase an "Elf on the Shelf" (an offense that ranks me somewhere below asparagus on Cael's list) we are able to provide a Christmas for them like the ones of my childhood-- lots of food, lots of gifts, lots of family.  Lots of batteries.  At least two garbage sacks of crinkled wrapping paper and tape wads.  Likely dog vomit from eating Santa's cookies during the night.  Probably a late bedtime.  But no "Elf of the Shelf".

So my kids are lucky.

With most of the boys' gifts purchased, we analyzed the Amazon shopping cart and realized that with their maturing interests, the money we allocated didn't stretch as far, and there would be significantly fewer things to open come Christmas morning.  I know that this is okay, but I also don't want them to be disappointed on the happiest day of their year.  (The happiest day of my year being the first day back to school.  Silence!)  Instead of cranking out several more gifts each, Joel suggested we try to find one really large joint gift that would make a big impression under the tree.  I liked that idea and got to work doing some online research and shopping, but hit an unexpected snag with each search.

First I searched for "big gifts", which provided little more than photo after photo of big gifts.  Not so helpful.

Next I tried "large gifts", which yielded the first real suggestion, a pair of gigantic red panties from the website www.greatbigstuff.com.  Interesting, I suppose, but still not what I had in mind for my five or seven year-old.

Toys.  That was the key-- I wasn't specifying the type of item I needed.  Now I was on to something.  I typed "really big toys" into Yahoo's search engine and hit "go".

Oh.  Holy.  Night.

Here's a free holiday tip-- before searching for "really big toys" make sure your SafeSearch filter is ON.  Mine wasn't.  As memorable as I hope this Christmas will turn out to be for my children, I don't think it will involve anything made of sparkly purple latex. 

I was horrified and quickly made sure the filter was on to prevent a similar catastrophe the next time Cael decides to type something innocuous like "rabbits" or "back door" on the computer.  I said a little prayer that Santa isn't really watching all the time and walked away. 

Maybe I'll have to buy the Elf after all.  Either way, I still have some time.  There's another holiday coming up, right?

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