Nov. 26th, 2009 09:13 pm
paraxeni: (Default)
[personal profile] paraxeni
This has cheered me up massively. Best Christmas present ever, Y/Y?

Date: 2009-11-26 11:12 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I can't wait. Giving up physical presents was the best thing we ever did.

We're buying Lisa's particularly ungrateful brother and his 'babies' (aged 19, 23 and 25) and wife, one of the 'Food for a displaced family' gifts. When she told him we weren't 'doing' Christmas presents, he kicked off and complained that his "poor little kids" were being slighted by everyone this year, because everyone they know is sick of buying 5 lots of presents and getting nothing back.

His respone? "We have three kids to buy for". Those 'kids' each have an income that's higher than our combined income, two live at home and pay no expenses for their upkeep, and one is getting married in summer. So he's raging because people with actual 'little kids' aren't participating in their usual grabathon, and the older relatives are choosing to only give toys/gifts to the under 16s.

We bought gifts and cards for them all last year (despite being broke), handed them out, we got a "Huh" from the 19 year old, an "Is that it, where's my girlfriend's present?" from the oldest one, and a card from the middle one. The card from the oldest one and his girlfriend didn't have my name on it or in it. Still, five years of living two streets away means it's hard to keep these things straight. Ahem.

So, we decided to give Oxfam Unwrapped gifts to them. That way they can't say we didn't bother, and someone less fortunate gets the benefit. They get a nifty fridge magnet out of it, and a card from Oxfam thanking them for helping people in poverty around the world.

We bought a toilet last year, and so that'll take some topping, but we'll gather together whatever we would've spent on presents and holiday food (we're buying it with vouchers I got for doing online surveys) and buy something fabulous. That's the best way I can possibly imagine of really honouring Christmas.

Date: 2009-11-26 11:26 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Yeah, the first year we did the Food Bank/Toys for Tots thing, our family... well, didn't so much freak out as look really confused. We gave them nice cards telling them where everything got sent and got some chocolates as well so there would be at least a little something, but yeah, it went basically unappreciated.

This year we're giving to these guys: . The kind of weaving these women do (backstrap) is excruciatingly painful, and leaves them unable to do much work at all after a certain point. I'm a spinner and knitter so I'm really interested in the project.

We're going to buy a sofa, the one thing we have never really had for our house. =) Cool about the vouchers! Do they work at any store or is it specific stuff?

Date: 2009-11-26 11:53 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
They're called luncheon vouchers, I hadn't even realised they still existed before last year! I get £4 of vouchers for each survey, and can be spent on food at most restaurants and supermarkets.

We bought last year's Christmas/New Year stuff with it, and we'll do the same this year. To add to that the supermarket we use (Tesco) sent us a voucher worth £12 off a shopping trip worth over £80. It means I can get some of the pre-prepared stuff that'll make Christmas Day sooo much easier.

That backstrap thing made me tense up. Ouch. I'm glad there are so many organisations that make helping easier.

Date: 2009-11-27 12:28 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Oh, that's amazing. I love that the benches not only reduce pain but create a better, faster product - it makes it more likely that they will get used!

Date: 2009-11-26 11:31 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Sounds like you've got it sorted. In fact reading this post has made me think that instead of getting my friend's baby books for Christmas that i could get him an Unwrapped present instead.

My friend's a primary teacher so giving him more books would be like bringing coals to Newcastle, plus she did a voluntary teaching stint in Kathmandu years ago so she'd probably appreciate it.

Holy run on sentences!

Also, those "kids" need a slap. Christ on stoats my almost 8 year old is more grateful because he remembers how poor we were before i got this job.

Date: 2009-11-27 12:06 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Exactly. As a little kid we were hard up, and appreciated everything we got. That lot are spoiled, selfish little idiots, seriously. Bitching about babies and toddlers getting preferential treatment makes me sick.

Our newest baby acolyte, Emily, was welcomed into the world with a gift of shelter for displaced families. (And some adorable clothes too, couldn't help it!) Her mum was so chuffed, she said it was the best present they'd received from anyone. We got a beautiful 'Thank You' card in the post yesterday, with a photo of the baby in it. She's got gorgeous blonde hair and bright blue eyes, and that grumpy Winston Churchill face that tiny babies have. Too cute.

Date: 2009-11-27 12:43 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
thank you for linking that! keir and i are going for ask for that for christmas, well, to have his parents do that for us. the kids want to have them buy books for kids. they are redeeming themselves. slowly.

we usually do heifer international and buy a share of a sheep or a sheep if we can swing it for a spinning/weaving area. and we have done the benches for the backstrap weaving- i am getting a bench like that when i get a loom, and they are dirt cheap here, and so comfortable, but i can't imagine not using one. hell, i have a really high end spinning chair we all fight over because it is so comfortable. but it is now no longer being made and it is MINE, so sod them.;p


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