Archive for December 10th, 2005

Christmas Objectives

Saturday, December 10th, 2005

Today’s objective: obtain a Christmas tree

With all the furor over the use of Merry Christmas in the corporate and retail workplace, I realize that “Christmas” tree is a misnomer. We are not Christians, and technically, we don’t celebrate Christmas as defined by Christians. We celebrate some holiday that falls on December 25th and involves lights, trees, mountains of food, miles of travel, gifts, and a lie about a mythical character who brings those gifts. I have yet to define that holiday as anything less generic than “Christmas”, so the term “Christmas” tree stands.

This year, Woo will be spending Christmas morning with us for the first time. For the past two years he’s been with his mom for Christmas. Last year, since Beau Hunk was in the middle of finals and his move into my house, and Woo spent two weeks with his mom, we didn’t even decorate. But this year, we are determined to see that we provide the boy wtih a proper Christmas. But we are also going to take this opportunity to let him learn about the kinds of holidays Beau Hunk and I had when we were kids.

Lesson #1: Trees do not come from parking lots.

We are lucky enough to live in an area where the Department of Forestry allows regular folk like us to go into thier National Forests and cut down a Christmas tree. Today’s plan is to do just that. We are going to dress Woo up in his little boots and jacket, pack a picnic lunch, grab Ye Olde Saw, pile into the 4WD and head off to the woods. We are expecting a great day of tree finding and forest tromping. Perhaps snow will be involved. I’m not sure if Woo has ever been to the snow. We think this is going to be a great kid day.

Lesson #2: Christmas doesn’t mean loot

Woo lives a rich life. He has more stuffed animals, toys, books and clothes than he can possibly use. The last thing he needs is more. I have already alerted my family to our plan to not spoil this child. We plan on only getting him a few gifts, preferrably practical. When I was a kid, we got fun gifts, but we also got things like socks and pajamas. Our stockings always included an orange, and sometimes an apple and walnuts, in addition to small fun items.

One of my aunts was commenting that Christmas has become so object-oriented lately, and it had her pretty fed up. I let her know that it would be perfectly acceptable if she didn’t buy Woo a present. In fact, it would be encouraged. As I said, Woo lives a full and rich life. As Woo gets older, we hope to have homemade presents in place of store bought loot.

Lesson #3: Family First

This one won’t be so easy, since Woo is the child of two households. But when he’s with us, we want to teach him that family, friends, and love is the most important thing, especially at Christmastime. Presents don’t mean a thing if you don’t have those you love around to share them. We may not be able to pull this one off, and certainly not this year, but we’re going to give it a shot.

I know it sounds ambitious, but we’re going to do our best to raise a little kid who appreciates what he has, and realizes that not everyone has it as good as he does. You might want to wish us luck with this one, I think we may need it.