I love Christmas. I love snowmen, and snowflakes, and Santa (Am I the only adult in the world that still holds onto the slightest glimmer of hope that he's real? Am I? If I am, I'm okay with that.), and red, and green, and decorating, and lights, and Christmas trees... everything! And I love, love, love to choose gifts for people and then give them to said people.
The past quite-a-few-years, my gifts have been limited to immediate family and Leigh, because, well, there wasn't anyone else. Even in college, there weren't friends. I was on no shortage of gift-getting, as my mom and even my dad/stepmom made sure I wasn't left out, but I did feel a bit of a shortage of gift giving. It's so much fun to pick out gifts. Leigh tried to help by including me in her college suite's Secret Santa, but I got her and she got me (and I knew that would happen!), so I just got to give/receive two things for/from her. So much for that.
But this year, do you know what different? I HAVE FRIENDS. It's making Christmas and birthday season exponentially better, not only because I have people to pick out gifts for, but because I get to celebrate with people and enjoy them during the season.
Now, my wallet doesn't so much like this. I'm still living on Cash Assistance and Food Stamps. I know each of my five friends will tell me that I didn't need to get something for them, but of course I did. Mom and I made it work: two gifts are handmade, one is sort of regifted (but not in a cheap way, in a... I love this and I really want you to enjoy it as much as I have, kind of way), one was bought months ago, and one Mom bought for me. A little nontraditional, perhaps, but it's going to work. I just hope everyone loves the things I chose for them. I hope they realize how important each of them is to me and how much this gift-giving represents for me.