Monday, December 2, 2013

The Holiday Shopping Battle

This post isn't really about writing so much as it's about the time of the year that I find myself in. It's inevitably the Christmas season now, and everyone is hurrying around trying to buy things. I told myself that this year I was going to get excited about buying presents for everyone, but now I find that when I try to go out and find the perfect gift for those on my list, I get very uninterested.

Why?

I think it is probably because I am burned out from all the shopping. I have been very good lately of not buying too many frivolous things for myself, and have kept track of all my bills from school, paying for things that are essential like a car, gas, and rent. But, now that I have to go out and find things that are supposed to be fun for others, I am stuck. My family is trying to alleviate the burden of shopping by doing a secret santa swap, thus giving me a limited number of gifts to find. But, I am more concerned with creating things this year, hence why most of my presents will be hand-made and probably of the book variety.

I took a few artist book classes at the university and made tiny books for each of my family members that year. They were beautiful, the best that I could have created, and they were one-of-a-kind. That's what made me excited to give them to the recipients, and that's what made my family love them so much. These gifts couldn't be purchased in a store. They came from my imagination and were filled with stories I remembered about each of the people getting a book. I hope to make some gifts like that again this year, and I am figuring out which style of book I want to create.

After the huge push to finish NaNoWriMo (I finished successfully!) I am burned out, not just when it comes to writing (that enthusiasm is slowly coming back as I near the finish of my first draft on The Sequel), but towards anything that requires me to put hard thought into something like shopping. I like my shopping to be stress-free. I like to browse, look at everything, and walk around the store with at least five different things until I decide on the single item I believe is best. I have no doubt that I will get done my Christmas shopping this year, but I just want to voice my concern that it's not really about the biggest item on sale for the cheapest price. Technology will fade. I know this personally this year because both of my Playstation 3 controllers are needing to be replaced! This time of year is about sharing the memories we have with our loved ones from the past year. If you can make a present for someone, I highly recommend it. You will feel great making it, and hopefully whoever gets the present will love it above all the others from Target. I certainly love hand-made gifts.

With all that said, if you need to brave the lines at the mall, good luck in finding a parking spot and also be safe out there! If it's between you and the man throwing fists for the plasma tv, just let him have it and pick up a good book instead. (I suggest a great classic!)