Friday, December 21, 2012

Tagged ... Bah, Humbug!

I awoke this morning to a "tagging".  

Yesterday, I blogged an article about having been nominated for an award.  The reward for being nominated was to nominate others.

Have I ever told you I'm somewhat lazy?  This is the post from Michelle L. I awoke to:

"Yes, the true gift of Christmas is sacrifice, forgiveness, and above all these, love. I would like to thank Melanie Chisnall of Scribbles and Smiles, who passed on the truest Christmas message of friendship I know to the rest of us.

Melanie is a dedicated blogger and most definitely, talented writer. If you have not already gotten to know this talented lady well, check out her blog, Scribbles and Smiles for little reminders of the positive things in life. She tagged us with some questions which I find great fun to answer."

1. What’s the coolest stocking gift you’ve ever received?
2. Do you prefer to wrap gifts or use gift bags? (short and easy one)?
3. What’s the weirdest ornament on your tree?
4. What are your thoughts on re-gifting?
5. Describe the best Christmas morning you’ve ever had.

Anyway, Good ol' Melanie (did I tell you she's the one who did it to me with the nomination?) did it to me again, inadvertently, that is!  Michelle is the real culprit!  (But, I still love both of them to death!) 

I must now answer questions about Christmas past. I could avoid doing this, but will participate in the tone of "Christmas Cheer" and the spirit of the season.  

Damn you, Bob Cratchett!

1. What’s the coolest stocking gift you’ve ever received?
My mother-in-law used to give me a pair of Dollar Store socks every year for Christmas.  These stockings were not particularly long lasting, nor well made.  One year, I had just come in from an unseasonal rainy Christmas entrance, so my clothes were drenched.  Not wanting me to "catch cold", she handed me my flimsy wrapped gift and said, "Go put these on."  An hour later, my feet started itching.  I pulled the black socks down, and my ankles and feet were black from the cheap dye from the socks.  The price of the socks, 99 cents.  The look on her face, Priceless!   Cool, indeed!

2. Do you prefer to wrap gifts or use gift bags? (short and easy one)?
Since most retailers now give purchases in plastic bags, I find them impossible to roll down the opening and tape it up.  So, I've started wrapping.  I'm terrible at it, and really don't want to get better.  A complete roll of wrapping paper around a bottle of perfume makes for much frustration in opening it.  I guess I'm a sadist at heart.

3. What’s the weirdest ornament on your tree?
We out grew our house about a decade ago, so we don't really have much of a tree.  A two foot high artificial contraption my wife picked up at the pharmacy she works suffices.  Gabriela was nosing around it the other night and sneezed.  So, somewhere, attached is the remnants of that.  It is definitely the weirdest ornament on the tree.

4. What are your thoughts on re-gifting?
I've never done it.  Passing on Dollar Store socks seems somewhat ridiculous.  Plus, they wear out by the second time you use them.  My oldest daughter has a habit of buying me polo shirts.  I never wear polo shirts.  I actually hate polo shirts.  So, I have at least 15 years of these hanging in the closet.  I could package them up and give them back to her husband, but I'm sure she'd recognize some of them.  Hey, that may be a thought!

5. Describe the best Christmas morning you’ve ever had.
As a parent, all of them were great, but stressful.  I always wondered, "Did I buy enough?  Are the kids happy or disappointed?"  I always wanted to get them everything, but money was a problem most of the time.  They never complained, and seemed happy.  At least, I never noticed.  (Of course, I was inhaling strange items at that time in my life, too, so that may have been a factor.)

As a husband, I was able to buy my wife a new diamond wedding ring set (in the multiple thousands) a few years back.  My wife had worn her grandmother's ring for years, as I was a cheaply paid radio DJ when we married.  The look on her face when she opened up the ring set was heartwarming.  (Plus, it got her off of my case about it from that point on.)

Personally, my parents used to spoil me silly with Christmas gifts when I was a kid.  Then, we'd get dressed and go to my grandmother's to eat Christmas dinner with the rest of the family.  There, they'd all give gifts to everyone.  There's not one that stands out in particular, just the group of all of them merging with gifts, love and family interaction.  (Yeah, I'm a sentimental fool at heart.  Damn, I've got to stop this crap or my reputation will be completely ruined!)

So, that's it!  It's over!  I've done as asked, or tagged to do.

Since my mother died at my age 13, Christmas has never really been the same.  Instead of being thrilled with the gifts I receive, I simply want to give everything I can to all I can and see the joy on their faces.  This year sucks, as my financial state has ceased that ability entirely.  My wife is going to work Christmas, to get double time at the pharmacy, and I'm going to stay home..  Hopefully, since the apocalypse didn't occur, next year will be better.

But, I'm not going to let it get me down.  I've got some jobs brewing in the fire that pay extremely well. I'm thankful that I still have my wife of 32 years (who still isn't smart enough to leave me and find someone worth having), my two cats (pains in the butts they are), and my family (living elsewhere, thank goodness).  

I'm going to go ahead (since I'm lazy and probably won't write another blog before the holiday) and wish each and every one of you a very Happy and Merry Christmas!  

Enjoy your families.  Find internal warmth in the smiles you provide!  Hold your loved ones close and share all the love you can!  It is a day to rejoice with each other and provide memories that will be cherished for decades to come.  Most important, take a moment of silence and give thanks to the birthday boy himself.  

Merry Christmas!

Check out the original post at:
Muses from the Deep: short stories, poems and reflections: The gift of the Yule

Oh, now it's time for me to tag someone.  Instead, I think I'll simply ask all of you that haven't yet been tagged to share with the rest of us.  It's your opportunity to voluntarily share.  This way, no one is left out, as no one should be.  Spread Christmas cheer in your blog, and let us know when you do.

And, if you really want to gather in readers, 

share the hot parts!

(I wish I could remember those days!)