Friday, December 16, 2011

The Joy of Not Doing Any Christmas Shopping

That almost sounds strange doesn't it? Not doing ANY Christmas shopping?

Well it's true.

A couple of months ago I came up with the idea of taking what money we would have spent on Christmas presents and donating it to those in need - like Somalia, Uganda, World Wildlife Fund, Pakistan, Child Sight Foundation, Global Animal Foundation, etc. etc. The list of those in need is absolutely endless!

And we are not on it.

I brought my suggestion to everyone in my immediate circle of family and friends and they have all agreed to go with my proposal.

So instead of going crazy battling shoppers and worrying that we have everyone on our list covered, we are spending our time searching out foundations that we would love to support.

We do have one restriction. We want foundations that actually use the money donated for what the foundation is all about instead of for paying themselves an 'administration fee'.

And that's it.

Come Christmas day we are all going to arrive at my nephew's house WITHOUT gaily wrapped packages. Instead we will be arriving with items for a pot-luck supper. The Man is going to deep-fry a turkey, my brother is bringing Trifle, I really like brussel sprouts done in yogurt and garlic, Byron is bringing cranberries and probably more cranberries, and my nephew promised to dust the house in flour to make it look festive (and to tease Byron and I as we are both Celiacs and that might do us in).

Once our meal is over with (and the dishes done) we are going to sit down with our lists and explain who we have chosen and why. Our lists can be as long as we want or as short as we want. It doesn't matter at all.

And then comes that moment I'm really excited about. It is seeing my selected foundations up on the computer screen and clicking SEND. It's knowing that I'm going to be giving a far more valuable gift to more than one person this year and that my gift is going to make a difference. Perhaps it will be food or drinking water, or even the gift of a smile for a child. Perhaps it's keeping an animal from being euthanized or providing shelter for the homeless along with a good hot meal. And perhaps I can only give $5 or $10 dollars to a selected few or to many, but it will be done with joy.

Each donation I am able to give is going to be wrapped with love from my heart. You don't need to put a bow on that.

10 comments:

ADDY said...

What a fantastic idea. Far to much money is spent at Christmas time on rubbish that people hardly use or really need or children hardly play with. I bet too the warm glow you get from knowing you have done some good with the money will be far btter than opening a present.

Leatherdykeuk said...

Brilliant! Go you!

Maggie May said...

What a lovely idea, Aimes.
I knew someone who had a wedding anniversary party and she asked everyone to give towards providing animals to people over seas who had nothing. Eventually she made a long list that we had all helped to buy goats and hens and such like. It was quite amazing how far the money went.
Maggie X

Nuts in May

Daryl Edelstein said...

a brilliant idea .. I think I am going to lobby for this for next year . xo

Mickle in NZ said...

So brilliant, dear Aims. With you and The Man, David and Byron plus others all the way.

The folks, on learning that I have so far bought nothing for them, say that my flying up there plus all I will do once there is my present .... I feel I must add in a cleaning of the fridge at least, along with cooking and loving and laughter and laughs with the cooking (which I love).

And isn't sitting just down with someone, even if you are only sharing water or conversation or silence together a gift.

I guess having Zebby Cat safe and so well cared for while I'm away is also a gift - yet I will fret for him, Wussy Mickle !!!

Akelamalu said...

What a wonderful idea!

Henry North London 2.0 said...

Deep fried turkey sounds nice

I bought a small goose for Xmas dinner this year.

Idi said...

Thank you feed me people. More for wifes and mercedes.

Median vahtikoira said...

What a wonderful idea!Love your blog. Keep going.

Megan said...

Oh I just had to come and post a link to the article I wrote on this right after Christmas because our great minds thought alike! Great post! Thanks for sharing!

I gave TIME for Christmas!

http://meganaronson.wordpress.com/2012/01/11/this-year-i-gave-time-for-christmas/