Sunday, 18 November 2012

Pre-Christmas Funk

This happens to me every year...  I become irritable and depressed when I go out.  The retail mania that has come crashing down all around us is impossible to avoid.  Every store I enter is stuffed to the brim and the blaring Christmas music that is supposed to motivate me to spend money and buy everything in sight GRATES on me.  Most annoying, everyone we see asks my children:

What do you want for Christmas?

Are you kidding me?


I LOVE Christmas but I HATE the retail atmosphere.  How did it get SO BAD?

Is it just me?  Am I just old and cranky?

I have a few more small gifts to pick up and I'm planning to head to our city hall building where a lovely shop is nestled in the back of the first floor.  Filled with handmade things made by local artisans, it's a treasure trove of unique, quality gifts that you won't find in the big box stores.  Alleluia!  Taken from my nearby city's website:

W.A.R.E.S. - Shopping

W.A.R.E.S is a small retail shop located in St. Albert Place that provides SAPVAC guild members the opportunity to display and sell their wares.  The name W.A.R.E.S. stands for Works of Art Representative of Every Studio, which stands up to the mandate of SAPVAC and helps promote, develop and foster awareness for visual arts and crafts within the City of St. Albert.

Hours of operation: Thurs. to Sat., Noon to 3:30 p.m.

 I also have a fair amount of food shopping to do in the coming weeks with a lot of entertaining on our November and December calendar.  I'm working hard to use up what we have in our stockpile, but the need to pick up fresh food is always present at this time of year (no garden in winter).

I'm aiming to finish up all my shopping by the end of November so that I can hole up in December and enjoy finishing some crafts and gift making.





  1. I don't know about being old and cranky. I'm 28 and it drives me up a wall every year! And I love Christmas more than most people I know, I even have the cheesy sweaters that I wear because I like them, all kinds of traditions... The whole "gimme gimme" generation my age and younger just makes me so sad, it's just not what Christmas is supposed to be about! Your local store sounds lovely, I wish we had something like that around here!

  2. Hey Grumpypants, here's your older sister aka That grumpy Old Woman. Here I am working in retail and I refuse point blank to turn on the Christmas music or decorate the shop. To be honest I don't love Christmas anymore, I'm just glad when it's over.


  3. I don't do Christmas until December 1st. My daughter's birthday is Nov. 29th so I like to get that out of the way then onto Christmas.
    I hosted our family Christmas last year but this year it is at my neices so that only involves taking a platter meat and a salad to share. Heavenly!
    Gift wise, I say it every year, I want to down size this year. A few things for my girls and some cash so they can buy clothes that they want.
    Food wise, our shops are open right up until Christmas
    Eve and one supermarket will be open the day after so I never really panic about getting heaps of food in. We will have a ham (that Angus glazes and bakes) and other meats and because its summer, we just do salads with our meals. Pretty casual really, well I hope that's how it pans out!

    Cheer up Grumpy Pants, you know you'll love it when the time comes!

    Cheers - Joolz

  4. I'm hearing you loud and clear, I've never understood why people have to stock up so much and buy food like NOTHING will be open for weeks not just 1 day. People seem to go a bit crazy. I for one love Christmas, but like you don''t love the commercialism and spend attitude associated with it. Like one of your other commenters I don't start the preperations/festivities until the 1st of December, it helps keep a sense of calm in my world.

    A couple of days ago I had the "audacity" to request no gifts for my husband and I this Christmas from my mother in law, I was sent a borderline nasty e-mail in reply which upset me immensely. I apoligised by e-mail but also explained my reasons for wanting no material gifts this Christmas, I directed her to watch the Story Of Stuff which articulates so well what I can't. To her credit (and my amazement) she did watch it, and guess what! I got a heartfelt e-mail in reply stating she could see my point of view. I never expected that in a million years, she just gave me one of the best gifts I have ever recieved.

    Sorry to prattle on in such length, I just found this particular post to be very relevent to me at the moment.

  5. Hi Sherri!

    I love Christmas, too, but don't enjoy a lot of things associated with shopping. Sooo, my preferred way to purchase gifts is online. I LOVE having things delivered right to my door! Plus shipping is often free this time of year. I sit at the computer wearing my pajamas and drinking a cup of coffee. No headaches, no bad roads to worry about driving on, and no long lines to deal with. But I do agree with you that it has gotten way too commercialsized.

    Your grandaughter is just loveley!

    Happy Thanksgiving!


  6. Oh, you guys are awesome! :) If only we could all get together and have a simple living evening of GOOD TIMES through conversation, yummy eats and laughs shared.

  7. I know how you feel Sherri. We went into a shop the other day, and Christmas things were soooo in our faces! That lovely music that is around this time of year, the poor staff must be glad when it is all over :) I couldn't wait to get out of there. I dread going to the shops at the best of times and avoid it when I can lol!

    I leave everything to the last minute for Christmas as I have my birthday on the 1st December and my mum's is on the 19th. Sometimes it feels that the birthdays are forgotten in the hype leading up until Christmas...then the mad rush hits.

    Compared to what I used to spend, I have scaled right back these days. Not many presents pass hands anymore, just for the children in the family...I do love the family gathering on the special day though, doesn't get better than that :)


    1. I know that December birthday feeling, too! Mine is the 20th and my mom's the 26th! We always felt slighted as kids with the "happy birthday and merry Christmas" all-in-one present, lol. Now I kind of like getting lost among the other celebrations - makes it harder for people to remember my age ;-)

  8. I had a melt down on the weekend from the volume of things to be done. I love Christmas but wish I could avoid the retail hysteria too. It just feels so manic and that everyone is grasping and grabbing at everything. I want to finish by end November also so I can focus on making crafts and enjoying the magic with Little Son without being stressed out about the buying stuff. xxx

  9. Oh I am just going to relax this year. I'll get done what I can get done and the rest we'll just do without. It's going to be a good ending to the year.

  10. So true. And you know what else makes me a grumpy pants? The expectation of getting a purchased gift that others have. (I make them suffer my handmade gifts nonetheless ;) Although they do thoroughly enjoy the cookies - speaking of which, when did food items become "not really a gift"?!) And the fact that certain (very well-meaning) family members insist that the amount of (cheaply made, likely toxic) toys is more important than the quality of one small thing, or (gasp) even nothing! Just call me Mrs. Grinch ;)

  11. Hello Grumpypants....well, said! I feel the same way. My family has been gifting to the children only for a few years.

  12. So glad i saw this post Sherri!! I thought it was just me...i seriously nearly snapped when i heard this awful xmas music and someone asked my twins in the pram what they wanted for Christmas again...they are 2 and don't even get the concept yet for goodness sake.
    I was also disappointed last year in the response from some family to my homemade gifts...they weren't spectacular but they were little tokens of love that had taken a lot of effort and late nights...i have gone through a stage of not wanting to give aything to them this year...i just feel it is an unecessary token not fully appreciated! I will try to remember i am not alone after reading your post x

  13. Well to top all birthday is Christmas Day! And yes I usually overlook with all the preparations for Christmas, but not this year!

    I'm 50 this Christmas and we decided to have a Christmas party (all day)! Everyone is welcome to turn up for lunch or tea or just a drink in the afternoon. We are keeping it casual with cold meats (all cooked on Christmas Eve) and salads and a bbq in the evening. We already have a few RSVP's in so I think we are in for a fun day.

    So totally different from our usual run round all over the district catching up with family!

  14. how appropriate, I too thought I was the only one!!!


  15. Oh, it's good to know I'm not alone! I get overwhelmed and kind of depressed this time of year with all the "special occasions" to prepare for. My husband's birthday is Dec. 7, my daughter's is Dec. 20, and our wedding anniversary is Dec. 27. I'm sitting here trying to motivate myself to get the Christmas decorations up instead of catching my breath after a very stressful week at work. Honestly, I'm just relieved when the new year rolls around!