ErikaRobin's Journal

Delusions of grandeur.

A common theme voiced throughout the fall and winter months is that we're all sick to death of the commercialism that the holiday season brings.

So my question for you is this:  What can you do or do you already do to counteract the commercialism brought into our homes via television, Internet and written media?  How do you make the holidays about something other than "what am I getting" and "I want that"?

I know for my family, we use it as a time (at least for our nuclear family) to be together, showing each other how much we value one another and enjoying the season for its beauty. We love the snow, the cold, the perfect blue sky (on those days when the sky is blue and perfect), the lights, the warmth of the house, seasonal foods, etc.

We have our own family traditions like lighting a red candle in the middle of the dinner table throughout December.  While we enjoy our meal together, we go around and tell one great thing that happened to us that day or something that made us smile and made us feel blessed.   This year we are planning to open any cards we receive at dinner as well. 

Each year my girls and I watch the movies I grew up with...all those wonderful Rankin and Bass productions, George C. Scott as everyone's favorite crotchety Ebenezer Scrooge and of course my Emmet Otter and his holey washtub.

We got hooked on The Polar Express a few years ago and every year we fall into making fun of the commercials we see.  (I guess that's our way of working commercialism in as a source of amusement, no?)  Last year it was a Totinos Pizza Rolls commercial.  It stuck with us all year long and still brings a laugh every time someone mentions them.  So I guess for us, in a way, we prefer not to have our holidays commercialism-free, as some of our holiday traditions are the direct result of commercials!  

While the holidays do find us huddled around the warmth of the flatscreen tv for a large portion of December, they also bring us together to be entertained and laugh with each other and that doesn't cost a thing.

What do you do to make the holidays more about you and your family and less about the gifting?

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Nov. 21, 2010 at 12:42 PM

Our children, while they are home, always pick the mitten off the tree at social services and pick out for another child.  We remind them that we dont have much, but we do have more than those children.  They continue to do this until each has graduated and moved out of the house.

We cook together.  Appetizers, homemade caramel corn, and listen to christmas music while we cook.  We make up holiday goodies for all our family members, and send a couple of them in the mail to a few that live a ways away.  We make sure we have laughter, bring up things we are thankful for, and things we have to look forward to the next year.

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Nov. 21, 2010 at 4:07 PM


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Nov. 22, 2010 at 12:26 AM

It's all about the rituals, baby.  Decorating, making fun of the people running about like loons at the last second, sleeping in, Christmas brunch.  We don't spend a lot and they know we won't.  We want them to remember the things we do together and not what they did or didn't get.  

Commercialism reeks.  So does hearing Christmas music before Thanksgiving.  

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Nov. 22, 2010 at 8:15 AM

lol, Sherrie, So true!  


WHAT, Joye? 

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Dec. 1, 2010 at 10:28 AM

Growing up, we would watch the Christmas Carol with George C Scott every single Christmas Eve.  Now we spend Christmas Eve at my mom's house since we host Christmas day at our house :-)

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Dec. 1, 2010 at 10:32 AM

Barbara, you should totally watch it on the 21st and celebrate the Solstice with George.  That's by far the best rendition of A Christmas Carol!  I heartily approve!

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Dec. 1, 2010 at 11:01 AM

I agree it's the best rendition of A Christmas Carol.  Last year, we went to see a live solo performacne of A Christmas Carol, and I'm hoping that we might see that same performance again this year.  It was a great family holiday outing!


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