Ho ho ho humph (but keeping the end goal in mind)

We’re midway through December. I did a lot of Christmas preparation early, thinking oh, I’ll just do the rest of it later. But eventually “later” needs to be upon us. Shipping deadlines start to hit. The reality of buying presents for a lot of people, including kids who sometimes change their minds, and who aren’t always easy to buy for, sets in.

Anyway, yesterday I opened all the Amazon + other retailer boxes that were sitting in my office. I started triaging things into piles, seeing who has what. I discovered that one present got lost in shipping (so it’s good I looked!). I made a list of what I still needed. I then went to Target during the school day. I bought…some of what was on my list. Then I put in another Amazon order of stuff I couldn’t find.

It will be fine. Everyone is getting at least something I think they will be genuinely happy about — and in some cases, surprised by. I will do one more shopping trip, and the wrapping will be crazy but I am going to share that task.

In the meantime, of course, life continues, including trying to get all podcasts through to early January into the hopper, and pre-planning my new daily newsletter. I’m also working on a book proposal. We still have multiple kid concerts to go. And — fun discovery! — the two youngest kids have birthdays right after the holidays and both want birthday parties. I got a nudge to deal with this when we got an invite for a classmate’s birthday party that is actually happening after my kid’s and I was like…oh crap. January turns out to come right after December, even if it’s in an entirely different year.

But there are plans to deal with it all, and so, onward! I’ll be heading into the preschooler’s class today to read and share a snack in celebration of his upcoming birthday. He is almost 4!

I also realized last night that while I’m probably overbuying presents, I seem to have underbought holiday cards. My husband noted that last year’s don’t have the date on them, and we have extra of those, so he may wind up using some of them. We rush ordered some others, and I may wait for those…

Sassy the elf seems to be feeling a bit ho ho humph in the picture for this post. The glass was a kid’s sand art project…

9 thoughts on “Ho ho ho humph (but keeping the end goal in mind)

    1. @Gillian – yep. I booked slots – including one much-desired place where I snagged a “last minute” cancelation. Now I need to deal with the invites…

  1. Hmm Christmas presents are an interesting topic. Why do you overbuy? So far our policy has been to be very low on gifts because we feel it easily gets very overwhelming. And I always feel kids already have sooo much stuff!

  2. I have a child with a February 1 birthday- it always seems like February is so far away and it sneaks up on me every single year!

  3. Yes, I do think that it is better for me to start doing something even if it’s deadline is 2 months from now. I find that in most cases, it’s either me start doing it early enough or I end up realizing that the deadline is so near that I start asking myself what I have been doing in all of the past days.
    And no, I did not recognize that what is in the glass is made of multi-color sand initially.
    I do have a couple of things to discuss with you though, Ms. Laura Vanderkam.
    1. You are preparing for gifts.
    Scenario 1: There are people who ask you for specific gifts, which you prepare for them.
    Scenario 2: There are people who don’t ask you for gifts, but you decided that they are worth giving gifts to.
    Scenario 3: There are people who don’t ask you for gifts, but you observed from the past that if they don’t get a gift from you on their birthdays and/or during a holiday season, they are not willing to maintain a decent relationship with you later on.
    Do all of the 3 scenarios above exist?
    A side note here will be that while I sometimes ask for gifts, I have never asked for gifts just because it is my birthday or just because it is the holiday season.
    2. You are also working on your book proposal. What would be the name of the book that you are writing?

  4. I’ve piled up the Amazon boxes and bags in our closet and I’m sort of avoiding the pile entirely, but I really need to start opening things and make sure everything is there. The last couple of years we’ve been doing all our “wrapping” in those Amazon gift bags that we recycle each year, so that makes some of it a little easier. I’m not sure if we have enough good ones left, though (the ribbons are the first to go and I don’t have the patience to re-thread new ones.)

    1. @ARC – I bet you could order a bunch of gift bags (not the Amazon version but new ones) off of Amazon and they’d be at your house in 24 hours. No need to rethread! Though it is nice to reduce impact!

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