I'm not a religious person but I love Christmas. I love Christmas lights, Christmas trees, Christmas baking, Christmas cards, Christmas Stockings, Christmas carols, Christmas Dinner- pretty much everything but the presents. Christmas presents stress me out. Deciding what to buy, going and finding it and then wrapping and addressing and sending them half way across the world just about takes the fun out of Christmas. I just want to give everyone the one thing they always wanted but didn't realise they wanted until they opened it. Not setting the bar too high hey?
I have a lot of issues with Japanese style Christmas, too. But the main one is that children get presents without any understanding of the meaning of Christmas and they don't give anything to anyone. It's just a stand there with your hand out kind of occasion.
So you see I've got a problem. How do I share my love of Christmas with my family without getting sucked into the whole commercialism thing?
We do a number of things including have the girls make presents for each other and K and I and making cards for the rest of their relatives but the jewel in my Christmas education is the local missionary's Christmas party. It's potluck, there's no Santa or presents and they do the nativity story with hand knitted dolls, a cardboard box stable and a bilingual narrator. It's really beautiful.
And so once a year we get dressed up in our Christmas finery and go and listen to thenativity. And seeing the girls enthralled by it makes my Christmas.