Saturday, December 29, 2012

Tis The Season

Just this afternoon, I started to scan through the 300+ unread posts on my Bloglovin' feed, and unsurprisingly there are still a number of gift guides (from pre-Christmas), wishlists (pre and post Christmas) and round ups of presents received. 

I've never made a secret of my feelings toward Christmas- it's not really my thing, and I prefer to let it wash over. I've done gift wish lists before now- mostly at the request of my partner to help him along the way, and I've posted before about a particular gift I've received and loved (my Kindle remains a favourite gift ever received). 

This time last week, I was staring round at a room resembling a demented Christmas explosion of paper, ribbons, gifts and glitter. I spent Christmas this year drugged up to my eyeballs in an attempt to maintain a cheerful and energetic demeanour- thanks by and large to a chest infection that's still causing problems. T and I both headed back North into the home counties to visit family, and therefore had to leave after work and other commitments were satisfied on Sunday night. None of these factors were particularly conducive to a feeling of festive cheer, I'll be honest, and another factor in our gift giving and organising this year, as it is for many, was cold hard cash. 

For both of us, keeping Christmas costs to a more modest scale was important. Whilst moving in together has been more limited in expenditure required than it is for most people, it hasn't been without it's costs. Another first for me this year was my attendance to a church service. We spent Christmas with T's family who are religious, and attending a service on Christmas morning is an important part of their Christmas. 

And what on earth do all these things have to do with my readership here? Well, it's been a little learning curve. Firstly, doing Christmas with a lesser cost never needs to be dull or sparse, and some of the gifts we gave this year were some of the best received I've ever had the pleasure of handing over. 

The second, and no, this is not a conversion- I remain non-religious, is a bit of meaning to the holiday. I have always maintained an open mind on religion. I find it interesting, and many of the rituals fascinating, and crucially I have the utmost respect for those who hold a true religious meaning to Christmas time- or any other festival. The local minister at the church I attended on Tuesday morning gave a witty, amusing, insightful sermon. It preached the values of love and of peace at all times but especially at Christmas, and reminded us that we should not wrap our values in layers of wrapping disguising their true meaning. I personally felt that it was a sermon that touched me as a person, as much as it touched all Christians in attendance. 

So this week there will be no round up of presents received- as there was no 'wish list' before (although you can see my wishes in a broader sense HERE). I'm not doing much by way of sale shopping- mostly because there seems to be several dozen other things consistently requiring my attention. And most of all, I wanted to wish everybody a Happy Christmas if it is still ongoing, and a Happy New Year 2013. To success, health and happiness. 


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