I have never really been a list maker. I try if there are a huge number of things I have to get done, to write them down so I don't forget anything, but I am not one of those people who makes out a list of things to do each day. Christmas isn't different...I hate to write out the list of what I want! I thought I might use this post to chronicle how I made it to my perfect gift on Christmas morning and then follow up with how the Bug makes her wants known.
I know that as a small child my parents would ask what I wanted and my list was usually VERY short and VERY simple...a ball...grover...a ball.
As I got older I remember writing a few letters to Santa. I remember getting a Trunk with my name engraved on a brass plate...filled with amazing dress up clothes. My brother and I spent many a day digging through that trunk for the perfect outfit. One of my favorite pictures of my brother has him completely outfitted head to toe in baby blue (tights, leotard, shirt, hat and dyed to match heels). He is a very handsome man, but as a little boy he made quite a lovely lady.
As time shifted my parents needed ideas of what to get to put under the tree. I remember for more than a few Christmases we got cash. Unable to scrounge up ideas for gifts they would give us money.I don't know why it was so hard for me to give them ideas. I still have trouble asking for specific things around the holidays. I want people to just know me and know what would make the perfect gift.
When I made the shift from child to adult the list needed was much shorter. We exchanged gifts at home, but were placed in a drawing for extended family. A couple of years ago this morphed again into a gift card draw. Everyone buys a $25 gift card and then we draw numbers to see the order of who picks their card from the tree. Of course if someone picks a card you really want...you can steal it instead of picking from the tree. We have very well mannered family, so if they know you really like your card they probably won't take it from you. This has worked really well for the last couple of Christmases...I know I usually buy a card I want to have and then hope to draw that one off the tree.
Christmas with the Bug was different. We mostly lived with my parents, and I was in college...so Santa was usually a joint effort. I would scour the Internet looking for the pink barbie scooter she just had to have and then my parents would help make sure to get it under the tree for her. This was our Christmas tradition for many years...the trampoline...the tree fort and swing set...the T.V. and DVD player for her new room in our new house. Once we moved to Fort Worth I took Santa back. The gifts may be a little less extravagant, but the Bug's needs are smaller now. One year it was several WebKinZ..another year it was a trunk filled with Harry Potter books...last year it was an XBox 360 Kinect (Mimi and PawPaw helped with that one.)
No matter who financed the gift the Bug needed to make sure Santa knew what she wanted. By the time she was old enough to understand the concept of writing a letter...Santa had email. I love this...she got an immediate response and was so happy to know that Santa could check her off his list...I also could not be caught years later with an old email to Santa in my wallet (she found one of her first letters to Santa in an old purse of mine like 5 years ago....after lots of explaining and the convincing her that all parents get the letters their children write back on Christmas morning to keep...I still have the letter.) Still email was less risky.
So even though the delivery process is the same the way we have made our deepest desires known has changed drastically over the years. Why not take a minute to remember how many holiday lists you have made?
To the Moon and Back