I regularly read American news on CNN, which I know is more propaganda than real news, but tonight I read the following:
Black Friday problems
It is a sad state that we feel we have to consume so much. That we need to spend more than we can afford and hurt people to spend. Oprah had a great article in her magazine this month on spending - noting that if you can't pay off what you are buying for Christmas by January you should be re-thinking what you are buying. It also spoke to how we all want to be generous and go above and beyond for our family and friends, but at what cost to you emotionally later when the ends aren't meeting.
I think it is important to remember that we have family and friends because of our personalities - who we are - and while it is nice to give and receive gifts I think it is more important to give yourself - share a skill that you have, spend time with someone - I would gladly accept a hand cleaning the house versus a box of chocolates or anything. I've asked my family to stop buying gifts for us "grown ups" and if they want to buy stuff for the guys ok, but to take it easy - spending time with someone is far more valuable than any one gift - or hand me down stuff that would otherwise go unused - case in point my aunty mary would spend all kinds of time with me and share stories and gave me little knick knack things she had collected or she would do my nails... she has been gone for a number of years but I remember these fond moments over any gift exchange. And please - when you end up shopping this year remember to stay smiling - there are stupid people everywhere and between rushing around and parking and crazy people and all the other day to day nonsense things can get out of control - sit back - take an extra sip of coffee and remember that you aren't one of the stupid people and that you have control of yourself and that smiles are free and your good behavior can be a beacon for others. xxoo